This Comment aims to provide a cohesive account of the rule of law’s ideological function by examining through a critical historicist orientation how power operates within language and contaminates the interpretive process. Section II outlines a traditional view of the rule of law that Section III challenges by explaining how the rule of law functions ideologically to obscure how judicial decisions reinforce power imbalances within legal discourse. Section IV then examines the Supreme Court’s Fourth Amendment jurisprudence and illustrates how critical historicist legal interpretations can expose the rule of law’s ideological function and the power underlying judicial decisions.
Ryan Aloysius Smith is a J.D. Candidate, Temple University Beasley School of Law, 2020.