Learning How To Be A Better Judicial Writer

It seems so simple. You are a judge, not a mathematician, and yet there is a lot of truth in Justice Stephen Breyer’s observation, “You explain to people first, why is it that I think what I think? You’re not trying to prove a point. Law is not mathematics. If I am a mathematician, I am trying to prove why ‘A’ follows from ‘B.’ But this is not the nature of this discipline. The best I can do is explain to a reader what my reasons are for adopting this particular conclusion.”

In 2006–2007, Bryan Garner interviewed eight of the nine Justices about legal writing and advocacy. These are the complete interviews:  http://www.lawprose.org/interviews/supreme-court.php?vid=breyer_part_1&vidtitle=Associate_Justice_Stephen_Breyer_Part_1

Because the files are large, the videos may take a few moments to start

LawProse is making these interviews available as a public service. Anyone may freely use these videos for educational purposes, with appropriate attribution to Bryan Garner or LawProse. 

No matter what court we sit on, becoming a better writer surely is something all of us can do.



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