Acceso abierto

Comparative Law and Language with Reference to Case Law


Comparative law is necessary in the modern era in which legal systems absorb ideas and elements from other legal systems and customary legal classifications are altered. Comparative law is closely intertwined with language because the research of different legal systems presupposes the study of legal texts written in different languages. Even if translation exists, a totally crucial issue arises: can the legal essence of the case law of a country be interpreted appropriately in any language but the original?

The link between law and language constitutes an absolutely essential relation, since language – through translation – is often the only way of accessing foreign law of foreign countries with different languages. So, the aforementioned relationship as well as its results in case law will be the main topic of this article.

First of all, the use of language is of outmost importance to any legal system, as it serves as the means of enforcing written legal rules and contributes to their dissemination, codification and evolution. Both law and language are cultural phenomena and this is why they must be studied taking into account the temporal and social circumstances. Living in the era of multicultural societies and immigration, the need of not just translating but rather transferring the legal essence of the jurisprudence among the different countries with different cultures give prominence to the essential link between comparative law and language systems.

Studying case law is regarded as a possibility to redirect judges and lawyers’ attention to the fact that the interpretation of the legal judgement is the cornerstone of a whole legal system of another country. The dynamic relationship of law and language dictates the result of the translation and interpretation of the case law of a specific country in relation to the case law of another country. Thus, comparative law comes out to serve as the guardian of the legal essence in order to transfer the legal point of the judge among different societies with different languages.

Calendario de la edición:
4 veces al año
Temas de la revista:
Philosophy, other