Humility has been mostly understood in law as an adjudicative virtue that favours judicial restraint. In contrast, this paper argues that the value of humility is hardly restricted to the judiciary -let alone to providing an argument for judicial deference. Rather, humiliy is an extremely valuable character trait across the legal professions. First, humility has an important impact on the organizational dimensions of the legal professions, in that it generates an egalitarian work environment, stregthens social bonds, is positively related to emotional well-being, enhances performance and innovation, and enables legal organizations to function in highly diverse contexts. Second, humility is critical for excelling in the professional legal practice, for it importantly contributes to both individual and collective legal decision-making. Third, it is also central to legal professional development as it is associated with attitudes that contribute to knowledge acquisition and, specially, with emotional and motivational dispositions that enable learning by example. After showing the relevance of humility to the legal professions, the paper suggests some ways in which it could be fostered through legal education and institutional design. It concludes by offering some reflections about the political implications of giving humiliy an important role in the context of legal professions.
|Title of host publication
|The Routledge Handbook of Philosophy of Humility
|Mark Alfano, Michael P. Lynch, Alessandra Tanesini
|Place of Publication
|Number of pages
|Published - 7 Jul 2020
|Routledge Handbooks in Philosophy