Law and Linguistics

The Corpus and the Critics
Thomas R. Lee
Associate Chief Justice of the Utah Supreme Court and Distinguished Lecturer in Law at Brigham Young University J. Reuben Clark Law School, Lecturer on Law at Harvard Law School, and Lecturer in Law at The University of Chicago Law School.

The authors acknowledge the editorial input of James Heilpern and Benjamin Lee, who contributed to an early draft of this paper, and express thanks to those who commented on earlier drafts or offered insights in response to presentations in various conferences, symposia, and talks. Thanks to the Association of American Law Schools and Brigham Young University, who each sponsored conference sessions at which the ideas in this piece were initially vetted. Thanks also to Seth Cannon, Brian Casper, Dante Chambers, Spencer Crawford, Josh Jones, Zachary Lutz, Christopher Melling, Elizabeth Nielson, Monick Perone, Jackson Skinner, and Kyle Tanner for their able research assistance.

Stephen C. Mouritsen
Shareholder at Parr Brown Gee & Loveless and Adjunct Professor at Brigham Young University J. Reuben Clark Law School.

A decade ago we proposed the use of the tools of corpus linguistics in the interpretation of legal language.