What shapes judicial temperament? What hones judicial style? Seeing as judges are grown in neither a hothouse nor a test tube, presumably they attain their temperament and style much the same way as the rest of us—which is how, exactly? Do we soak up influences like sponges? Or do we spring forth like Athena, our outlook and predilections mostly formed, and find in outside influences that which we want to see? I am not qualified to answer these questions, about either judges or people in general, yet they are the questions that Bernadette Meyler’s lovely piece on Cardozo’s Literary Precedents prompts for me. I will suggest here that Meyler’s piece identifies and rejects some bad answers to these questions and also hints at some more intriguing possibilities.

Leslie Kendrick, Literary Influence on Legal Philosophy: A Comment on Professor Meyler’s Cardozo’s Literary Precedents, 34 Yale Journal of Law and the Humanities 246 (2023).
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