(Non-)Legal argumentation patterns and intertextuality in court decisions
The project analyses the persuasiveness of judicial reasoning, on which the impact of judgments on social cohesion essentially depends. Using methods of close and wide reading, it aims at developing a specific qualitative content analytical approach of interpreting adjudication from an interdisciplinary, not (only) dogmatic perspective. The research focuses on the thematic field of "kinship/family/gender", covering rulings on the prohibition of incest, marriage for all, parenthood for all, early marriage, etc. In order to identify legal and non-legal patterns of argumentation, the judgments will be opened up in their intertextuality: They will be interpreted from the perspective of social and cultural studies, contextualized and counter-read against the background of new forms of life and family. We will examine the argumentative patterns with which controversially discussed decisions of professional and constitutional courts legally interpret or recode basic social values in a „fresh judgment“.