Enrico Diciotti

Explicit and Implicit Rules. On Guastini's Theory of Interpretation.

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Keywords: Guastini's Theory of Interpretation, Explicit and Implicit Rules, Indeterminacy of Law, Text-Oriented and Fact-Oriented Interpretation, Hard and Easy Cases.

Riccardo Guastini distinguishes between explicit and implicit legal rules. He holds that explicit rules can be identified by reading legal texts according to linguistic conventions and interpretive canons. However, since some interpretive canons can be used to identify both explicit and implicit rules, the distinction must be made differently. My theses are that explicit rules can be identified by reading legal texts according solely to linguistic conventions and that the indeterminacy of linguistic conventions makes possible to give a legal text many different meanings. On these grounds, I discuss first Guastini's distinction between text-oriented and fact-oriented interpretation and then his rejection of a "hybrid" theory of legal interpretation.

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