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Law and Aesthetics draws on the work of poets as well as philosophers. Taking as its starting point Shelley's assertion that poets are unacknowledged legislators, the book suggests that there is a way of thinking that, as yet, has not been taken up by those who make use of literary aesthetics to understand law. The book tracks this aesthetic thinking through the failures of critical legal studies and stages an encounter with psychoanalysis, before suggesting that an aesthetics of law can be exhumed from Nietzsche's work. The aesthetic is a call to the creative: fashion new law. A review of contemporary legal theory that makes use of aesthetic perspectives suggests that dissident and radical "Nietzschean" energies continue to animate legal thought. In the final chapter, an aesthetics of law is shown to make for an interruption of legal categories, and the generation of new legal relationships. The book concludes with a further meditation on Shelley's poetry, and a call to continue in the spirit of aesthetic reinvention.
About the Author
Adam Gearey is a Reader in Law at Birkbeck College, University of London. He was a visiting professor at the Makerere University, Uganda, The University of Pretoria, and the University of Peace, Costa Rica. In 2009, he was a fellow at the Center for Law and Society, University of California. He is the author of The Politics of Common Law (Routledge, 2009) and Law and Globalization (Rowman & Littlefield, 2005).