Developmental Jurisprudence
Volume 88, No. 4, Summer 2016
By Emily Buss, Mark and Barbara Fried Professor of Law, University of Chicago Law School [PDF]

This Article focuses on the limitations of the “developmental approach” to handling juvenile defenders. It suggests that the relational aspect of development and its relevance to law should be acknowledged. Children are not simply changing as they grow up. They are being raised, and laws and legal actors play a role, for good or for ill, in that childrearing. Attention to this role suggests some changes to the approach to the law affecting children, from the terms used to the roles and procedures assigned to those legal actors who interact most directly and powerfully with children. Taking inspiration from the “therapeutic jurisprudence” movement, the Article calls for a “developmental jurisprudence” that recognizes law as a developmental agent.