Date and time to be determined | Malta Council for the Voluntary Sector

Course: Philosophy of Law by Judge Emeritus Silvio Meli

How should we view law from a philosophical perspective?
Course: Philosophy of Law by Judge Emeritus Silvio Meli

Time & Location

Date and time to be determined
Malta Council for the Voluntary Sector, 181, Melita Street, Valletta, Malta

About the Event

A proper understanding of the above will help the participant to be better equipped to face the vicissitudes of any legal conundrum that may be thrown into one’s path and to adopt any preferred outlook on the basis of sound philosophical standing thereby basing one’s personal outlook on an well-informed basis rather than on prejudice.Law is a tool of social cohesion. The study of Philosophy of law helps one to properly charter one’s way throughout the diverse meandering paths of this phenomenon. In this way, when embarking on this study one really enters into a genuine dialogue with past and present thinkers on the subject and will soon realize the difficulties involved. However, one will gradually also realize why any particular outlook will be preferred to any other. In this way, one will enrich one’s own cultural outlook, thereby subtly learning how to properly discern the issues addressed and strengthen one’s choices in preferring any option that might be adopted. Indeed, as T. E. Holland aptly puts it in his “The Path of Law”, (1897, 8 Harvard Law Review 457, p. 478):

"While legal science is capable of being intelligently learnt, legal facts are capable only of being committed to memory”.

The aim of this short course is therefore to introduce the participant to the subject-matter at issue and to the methodology required to master it with fruition. It is therefore intended to focus, albeit briefly, on the following aspects:

  • Defining and examining what law is and why should it occupy such an important place in civilized behaviour;
  • Addressing two major categories of philosophy of law, namely Analytical and Normative Jurisprudence;
  • Have a general preview of what Positive Law is;
  • Have a general preview of what is understood by Natural Law; and finally,
  • Focus on the Theory of Personality.

Defining and examining what law is and why should it occupy such an important place in civilized behaviour; Addressing two major categories of philosophy of law, namely Analytical and Normative Jurisprudence; Have a general preview of what Positive Law is; Have a general preview of what is understood by Natural Law; and finally, Focus on the Theory of Personality.

Silvio Meli who holds a Doctorate in Laws from the University of Malta was appointed a Magistrate in 1990 and a Judge in 2001. He retired from the bench in April 2019. He remains a Visiting Lecturer at the Faculty of Laws of the University of Malta. Throughout his career he has served on various administrative tribunals , committees , commissions and board of inquiries. He was also the founding President of the Commission of Fair Trading and authored various articles and publications related to the subject.

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