No theory is good except on condition that one uses it to go beyond.
One of the most important aspects of studying legal theory or jurisprudence is coming to terms with ‘theory’. In this chapter, we look at what theory is and the ways in which theoretical perspectives are used to better understand the law.
When you look at the way the law functions, it is easy to become bogged down with the rules that must be applied and the facts to which they relate. This can prevent you gaining a broader understanding of the forces that determine those rules and shape their application to particular circumstances.
The use of theory helps us to analyse the value and belief systems that support our understanding of what law is for, and the basis of our belief in it.
In short, we use theories of law to move from thinking about what the law is in a certain situation, to considering why the law is what it is.