Legal Cartography: The Result of an Attempt to Formulate an Appropriate Legal Theory for Nigeria

Mojisola Eseyin


The idea of what is law has eluded many jurists and legal philosophers, yet many have attempted to define law without arriving at a universally workable theory. The major cause of this fruitless effort is the attempt to generalize.  Many theories of law have been propounded over the years with one or two expressing the legal system of some of the societies for and out of which they were postulated. Nigerian law and legal system have defied most theories of law when clinically tested against the internal workings of the system and practical applicability. This work examines major theories of law in the light of the Nigerian legal system and finds them not apt and adequate to define or represent what law is in Nigeria. The scope of this work would become unmanageable if desperate attempt is not made to curb same. Our attraction to discussing theories of law is to drive home the point that the Nigerian legal system has defied almost all the theories of law, hence, the need for another look. The approach of this work is not to seek a totally infallible legal theory. That would be propounding an utopian theory. This work seeks to formulate an appropriate legal theory for Nigeria. This research adopts the style of the cartographer in its formulation.

Keywords: Legal Theory, Legal system, Nigeria.

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