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Fables of the Law

Fairy Tales in a Legal Context

Edited by: Daniela Carpi and Marett Leiboff

The latest development concerning the metaphorical use of the fairy tale is the legal perspective. The law had and has recourse to fairy tales in order to speak of the nomos and its subversion, of the politically correct and of the various means that have been used to enforce the law. Fairy tales are a fundamental tool to examine legal procedures and structures in their many failings and errors. Therefore, we have privileged the term "fables" of the law just to stress the ethical perspective: they are moral parables that often speak of justice miscarried and justice sought.
Law and jurists are creators of "fables" on the view that law is born out of the facts (ex facto ius oritur) so that there is a need for narrative coherence both on the level of the case and the level of legislation (or turned the other way around: what does it mean if no such coherence is found?). This is especially of interest given the influx of all kinds of new technologies that are "fabulous" in themselves and hard to incorporate in traditional doctrinal schemes and thus in the construction of a new reality.

Author Information

Daniela Carpi, University of Verona, Italy; Marett Leiboff, University of Wollongong, Australia.
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Audience: Scholars of literature and law.