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BYU Law Review

Abstract

German legal thinking is renowned for its hair-splittingly sophisticated dogmatism. Yet, some of its other contributions to research are frequently overlooked, both at home and abroad. Two such secondary streams recently coalesced into a new corpus-based research approach to legal practice: Empirical legal research (which had already developed in Germany by 1913) and research on language and law (following German pragmatist philosopher Ludwig Wittgenstein’s work of 1953). This Article introduces both research traditions in their current German incarnations (Evidence-Based Jurisprudence and Legal Linguistics) and shows how three common features—their pragmatist observation of social practices, their interest in dissecting legal authority, and their big data strategy—inspired a new, corpus-based research agenda, Computer Assisted Legal Linguistics (CAL²).


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