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Oakeshott on Law

Going all the way back to his early essay “The Concept of a Philosophical Jurisprudence,” Oakeshott always saw an intimate connection between political philosophy and the philosophy of law. Steven Gerencser subjects Oakeshott’s philosophy of law to careful analysis in his essay “Oakeshott on Law.” He argues that there is a fundamental tension between the…

Nick Capaldi

Happy 80th to Nick. I’ve known Nick for 20 years and have always admired his dogged and unflappable ability to swim against the tide. Moreover, he has always been most generous and encouraging to me and in support of my various endeavors. My favorite books of his are Hume’s place in moral philosophy, John Stuart Mill: A Biography…

Oakeshott: born on this day

For those who’ve never read that most subtle, cultivated, humane and refined of minds Michael Oakeshott’s concerns resonate as deeply as ever. For the novice, I’d recommend his mid-career Rationalism in Politics, a most elegant collection of essays. A more difficult, but for me the vital underpinning cutting across all his work, is his equally elegant and…

Michael Joseph Oakeshott

Born on this day, that most subtle, civilized, cultivated, elegant, insightful, humane and liberal quality of mind. For all things Oakeshottian check out the Michael Oakeshott Association, the unaffiliated Michael Oakeshott Society, loads of stuff on this site including a very rare BBC recording of Oakeshott on the philosophy of history, and last, but no means least, A Companion to…

The Embedded Epistemologist

I was startled to read, in the 6th edition of a well-known textbook, McCormick on Evidence, that the “reasonable doubt” formula “points to what we are really concerned with, the state of the jury’s mind,” whereas “preponderance of the evidence” and “clear and convincing evidence” “divert attention to the evidence.” This has things exactly backwards:…