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09/01/2019

Evan Zoldan: Corpus Linguistics and the Dream of Objectivity
Michael Ramsey

Evan C. Zoldan (University of Toledo College of Law) has posted Corpus Linguistics and the Dream of Objectivity (Seton Hall Law Review, forthcoming) (43 pages) on SSRN.  Here is the abstract:

A growing number of scholars and judges have embraced corpus linguistics as a way to interpret legal texts. Their stated goal—to make legal interpretation more objective — is an admirable one. But, is their claim that corpus linguistics can reduce the subjectivity associated with judicial intuition and biased data more than just a dream? This Article analyzes the use of corpus linguistics for statutory interpretation and concludes that this novel practice does not live up to its promise to make legal interpretation more objective. Instead, the use of corpus linguistics relies on judicial intuition and biased data, disrupting its proponents’ dream of objectivity.