Stanley Fish, the Duke University Arts and Sciences professor of English, chair of the Duke English Department, distinguished professor of law, and self-described “academic leftist,” has just finished a dazzling performance. The overflow audience at Princeton has sat rapt as Fish, who made his reputation as a critic of Renaissance poetry and a theorist of “self-consuming artifacts,” demonstrates the sheer absurdity of the law. Time and again he shows that what is clearly X in a legal text can, by
dint of judicial interpretation, become not X.
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