Interpreting Law – The Role of Judges in Contemporary Democracies
International conference on Interpreting Law – The Role of Judges in Contemporary Democracies took place at the University of Belgrade Faculty of Law on Friday, 14 October 2016. The Conference was organized by the Serbian Association for Legal and Social Philosophy (IVR Serbia) and the University of Belgrade Faculty of Law.
Legal interpretation has been one of the predominant topics in contemporary jurisprudence. From descriptive issues regarding the proper characterization of legal interpretation to normative issues concerning the proper doctrines of legal interpretation, this sub-field of legal theory and philosophy is vibrant after decades of heated debates. The topic of legal interpretation on the occasion of the Annual conference of the Serbian section of the IVR was approached from the perspective of the role of the judge in contemporary democracies. Judicial interpretation is the main focus of much of the philosophical literature on the subject, and the aim of the conference was to examine the impact of judicial interpretation on the political framework in which it occurs and on our understanding of it, as well as to clarify the impact of this political framework on the interpretative calling of the judge.
As usual, the Conference included presentations from some of the most influential legal philosophers in the relevant field: Brian Leiter (University of Chicago) who gave a keynote address on the topic of The Roles of Judges in Democracies; Michel Troper (University of Paris X), with the paper A Causal View of Judicial Interpretation, Otto Pfersmann (Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales/Inst for Advanced Study in Social Sciences, Paris) – On the Fundamental Distinction between Motives and Interpretation and the Consequences of Their Confusion – The Case for Strict Legal Scholarship, Pierluigi Chiassoni (University of Genova) – Is Realism Really at Odds with Constitutional Democracy?, Paolo Sandro (University of Salford) – A Critical Evaluation of (Moderate) Realism in Law, Luka Burazin (University of Zagreb) – Rule of Recognition and Methods of Interpretation, Tanasije Marinković (University of Belgrade) – On the Distinction between Judicial Activism and Self-Restraint: European Perspective and Bojan Spaić (University of Belgrade) Legal Interpretation and Epistemic Authority. See Conference Program.