, Volume 19, Issue 4, pp 459–470 | Cite as

The Rational Reconstruction of Argumentation Referring to Consequences and Purposes in the Application of Legal Rules: A Pragma-Dialectical Perspective

  • Eveline T. FeterisEmail author


In this paper, the author develops an instrument for the rational reconstruction of argumentation in which a judicial decision is justified by referring to the consequences in relation to the purpose of the rule. The instrument is developed by integrating insights from legal theory and legal philosophy about the function and use of arguments from consequences in relation to the purpose of a rule into a pragma-dialectical framework. Then, by applying the instrument to the analysis of examples from legal practice, it is demonstrated that the instrument can offer a heuristic and critical tool for the analysis and evaluation of legal argumentation that can ‘bridge’ the gap between more abstract discussions of forms of legal argumentation on the one hand, and legal arguments as they occur in actual legal practice on the other hand.


consequentialist argumentation legal argumentation legal interpretation legal reasoning teleological interpretation 


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Copyright information

© Springer 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Speech Communication, Argumentation Theory and RhetoricUniversity of AmsterdamNetherlands

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