Document Type


Publication Date



Over the last decade the Conference on Critical Legal Studies (CCLS) has rekindled an important debate about the study of legal ideologies. The work by scholars within this movement is provocative because it demands that we take seriously the contradictory needs and ideological parameters of liberal legalism. The growing body of work associated with this movement has not, however, included a criticism of the ideological underpinnings of legal methods in general and doctrinal analysis in particular. We begin with the premise that scholarship must include a self-critical method. In Part I-The Political-Economic Constraints of Liberal Legal Scholarship-we explore why questions of methods, i.e. of how one asks and answers questions, has not been a central issue within CCLS. In Part /I-Reformulation of Method-we present a beginning toward a framework for developing a self-critical method for understanding legal ideologies.