Judicial activism and fidelity to law

Gonçalo de Almeida Ribeiro*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


The Essay contrasts three accounts of judicial fidelity to law, labeled ‘legalism’, ‘idealism’ and ‘pluralism’. It then explores the more persuasive model of adjudication—pluralism—in greater depth, examining five fundamental principles of the law both in general theory and in the exemplary context of stare decisis. This framework is deployed to outline a typology of judicial activism comprising three varieties. A final section focuses briefly on the special case of judicial review of legislation.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationJudicial activism
Subtitle of host publicationan interdisciplinary approach to the American and European experiences
EditorsLuís Pereira Coutinho, Massimo La Torre, Steven D. Smith
PublisherSpringer Science and Business Media B.V.
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)9783319185491
ISBN (Print)9783319185484, 9783319365145
Publication statusPublished - 2015

Publication series

NameIus Gentium
ISSN (Electronic)2214-9902


  • Fidelity to law
  • Fundamental principles
  • Idealism
  • Judicial activism
  • Judicial review
  • Legalism
  • Models of adjudication
  • Pluralism
  • Types of activism


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