Vanderbilt Law Review


David Lyons

First Page



This Article concerns an argument which, if sound, would sup-port a doctrine of precedent with unlimited scope-one that would provide some justification, though not overwhelming justification,for following all precedents, however regrettable they may be. The argument holds that respect for precedent is required by the principle that like cases should be treated alike.Although that argument is challenged here, no claim is made that a practice of precedent cannot be justified. The larger purpose of this Article is to clear the way for a systematic inquiry into the sound reasons for, as well as the legitimate scope of, such a practice.

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