Analogy reversed

Swaminathan, Shivprasad (2021) Analogy reversed. Cambridge Law Journal, 80 (2). pp. 366-396. ISSN 81973

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Standard accounts of analogy in law picture it as reasoning from the past case (source) to a solution in the case at hand (target). This article argues that the normatively constraining invocations of similarity or likeness presupposed by standard accounts do not obtain. It then sketches an alternative account based on Michael Polanyi's idea of polycentricity (not Lon Fuller's) on which the orientation of analogical reasoning is reversed. A past case (here “target”) is picked and framed in certain ways to persuade the interlocutor about the decision independently reached in the present case (here “source”) through the guidance of tacit knowledge (involving anticipation of what is likely to pass muster with the legal community) which normatively constrains the process.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Analogical reasoning | Michael Polanyi | Persuasion | polycentricity | Rhetoric | Tacit knowledge
Subjects: Social Sciences and humanities > Social Sciences > Law and Legal Studies
JGU School/Centre: Jindal Global Law School
Depositing User: Mr. Syed Anas
Date Deposited: 28 Nov 2021 10:07
Last Modified: 10 Feb 2022 10:48
Official URL:


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