University of Technology Sydney

76008 Jurisprudence

Requisite(s): ( 70311 Torts OR ((76006c Public International Law OR 70108c Public International Law OR 76110c Introduction to Public International Law) AND 70110 Introduction to Law))
The lower case 'c' after the subject code indicates that the subject is a corequisite. See definitions for details.
These requisites may not apply to students in certain courses.
There are course requisites for this subject. See access conditions.


This subject deals with the theoretical foundations of law. It considers such questions as these: What is law? What is the purpose of law? What is the relationship between law and morality? How should (and do) judges decide cases? What should judges do in a case in which an applicable rule mandates an unjust outcome? Should law prohibit conduct on the ground of its immorality when the conduct in question does not harm third parties? Does law discriminate against or disadvantage women (or men for that matter)? Is the state’s punishment of criminals justified? Is imprisonment justified or should it be abandoned in favour of an alternative type of punishment? These are longstanding questions that continue to be relevant. A number of jurisprudential theories offering answers to these questions are examined.

Students apply skills of analysis, research, communication and critical thinking, learning in the process to evaluate and synthesise information and to critique philosophical arguments. Students engage in a rigorous process of reading, discussing and applying legal philosophy. Students develop their ability to communicate understanding of the concepts and arguments by presenting their ideas in seminars and through written assessments.

Detailed subject description.

Fee information

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Access conditions

Note: The requisite information presented in this subject description covers only academic requisites. Full details of all enforced rules, covering both academic and admission requisites, are available at access conditions and My Student Admin.