Volume 8, Issue 2
  • ISSN 2211-4742
  • E-ISSN: 2211-4750
Buy:$35.00 + Taxes



Impartiality is one of the core values underlying the administration of justice. A complaint about a judge’s supposed lack of impartiality may be filed on the grounds of the judge’s verbal behavior. In this article I will analyze complaints that concern the judge’s use of rhetorical questions during court hearings. I will explore what role these complaints may play in the strategic maneuvering of a party who seeks the judge’s disqualification.


Article metrics loading...

Loading full text...

Full text loading...


  1. Bauw, E.
    2011 Wat te denken van wraking?Ars Aequi, vol.60, issue3, 202–206.
    [Google Scholar]
  2. Danet, B.
    1980 Language in the legal process. Law & Society Review14(3), 445–564. 10.2307/3053192
    https://doi.org/10.2307/3053192 [Google Scholar]
  3. Eemeren, F. H. van
    2010Strategic maneuvering in argumentative discourse. Extending the pragma-dialectical theory of argumentation. Amsterdam/Philadelphia: John Benjamins. 10.1075/aic.2
    https://doi.org/10.1075/aic.2 [Google Scholar]
  4. Eemeren, F. H. van , & R. Grootendorst
    1984Speech acts in argumentative discussions: A theoretical model for the analysis of discussions directed towards solving conflicts of opinion. Dordrecht: Foris Publications. 10.1515/9783110846089
    https://doi.org/10.1515/9783110846089 [Google Scholar]
  5. Eemeren, F. H. van & R. Grootendorst
    1992Argumentation, communication and fallacies: A pragma dialectical perspective. Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
    [Google Scholar]
  6. Eemeren, F. H. van , P. Houtlosser & A. F. Snoeck Henkemans
    2007Argumentative indicators in Discourse. A pragma-dialectical study. Dordrecht: Springer. 10.1007/978‑1‑4020‑6244‑5
    https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4020-6244-5 [Google Scholar]
  7. Fahnestock, J.
    1999Rhetorical Figures in Science. New York/Oxford: Oxford University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  8. Feteris, E. T.
    1987 The Dialectical Role of the Judge in a Dutch Legal Process, In J. W. Wenzel (Ed.), Argument and Critical Practices. Proceedings of the Fifth SCA/AFA Conference on Argumentation, 335–339, Annandale, VA: Speech Communication Association.
    [Google Scholar]
  9. 2017Fundamentals Of Legal Argumentation. A Survey Of Theories On The Justification Of Judicial Decisions. Dordrecht: Springer. 10.1007/978‑94‑024‑1129‑4
    https://doi.org/10.1007/978-94-024-1129-4 [Google Scholar]
  10. Frank, J.
    1990 You call that a rhetorical Question? Forms and functions of rhetorical questions in conversations. Journal of Pragmatics, 723–738. 10.1016/0378‑2166(90)90003‑V
    https://doi.org/10.1016/0378-2166(90)90003-V [Google Scholar]
  11. Giesen, I. , F. Kristen , L. Enneking & L. van Lent
    2013 Op weg naar een nieuwe wrakingsprocedure. Meer legitimiteit en minder oneigenlijk gebruik. (Challenging Judges: A New Procedure for Disqualification of Judges in the Netherlands?). Nederlands Juristenblad, afl08, 466–477.
    [Google Scholar]
  12. Hammerstein, A.
    2014 ‘Onpartijdigheid in het geding’, Trema, 26, afl5, 148–154.
    [Google Scholar]
  13. Harris, D. J. , M. O’Boyle & C. Warbrick
    2014Law of the European Convention on Human Rights. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  14. Ilie, C.
    1994 What else can I tell you? A pragmatic study of English rhetorical questions as discursive and argumentative acts. PhD dissertation, University of Stockholm.
  15. 1995 The validity of rhetorical questions as arguments in the courtroom. In F. H van Eemeren , R. Grootendorst , J. A. Blair & C. A. Willard (Eds) Proceedings of the Third ISSA Conference on Argumentation. Special fields and cases. Volume5, 73–88. Amsterdam: Sic Sat.
    [Google Scholar]
  16. Kloosterhuis, H.
    1997 The Reconstruction of Legal Analogy-Argumentation: Monological and Dialogical Approaches. OSSA Conference, Archive. 66.
    [Google Scholar]
  17. Knapen, M.
    2012 Advocaten ontdekken wraking, Advocatenblad 2012, nr.1, 18–23.
    [Google Scholar]
  18. Lanham, R. A.
    1991A handlist of rhetorical terms. Berkeley: University of California Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  19. Loucaides, L. G.
    2007The European Convention on Human Rights. Collected Essays. Leiden, Boston: Martinus Nijhoff Publishers. 10.1163/ej.9789004158832.i‑273
    https://doi.org/10.1163/ej.9789004158832.i-273 [Google Scholar]
  20. Pascual, E.
    2006 Questions in legal monologues: Fictive interaction as argumentative strategy in a murder trial. Text & Talk, vol.26, issue3, 10–21. 10.1515/TEXT.2006.014a
    https://doi.org/10.1515/TEXT.2006.014a [Google Scholar]
  21. Plug, H. J.
    1996 Complex argumentation in judicial decisions. Analysing conflicting arguments. In D. M. Gabbay and H. J. Ohlbach (Eds.) Practical Reasoning. International Conference on Formal and Applied Practical Reasoning, FAPR ’96 Bonn, Germany, June 3–7, 1996 Proceedings, 464–480, Berlin: Springer. 10.1007/3‑540‑61313‑7_94
    https://doi.org/10.1007/3-540-61313-7_94 [Google Scholar]
  22. 2002 Maximally argumentative analysis of judicial argumentation. In Frans H. van Eemeren (Ed.) Advances in Pragma-Dialectics, 261–270, Amsterdam: Sic Sat / Newport News, Virginia: Vale Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  23. 2016 Administrative Judicial Decisions as a Hybrid Argumentative Activity Type. Informal logic, 36 (3), 333–348. 10.22329/il.v36i3.4722
    https://doi.org/10.22329/il.v36i3.4722 [Google Scholar]
  24. (in press). The analysis of argumentation underlying complaints about a lack of judicial impartiality. In M. Manzin , F. Puppo & S. Tomasi Eds. Studies on Argumentation & Legal Philosophy. Multimodal Argumentation, Pluralism and Images in Law. Trento: Quaderni della Facoltà, Università di Trento.
    [Google Scholar]
  25. Rossum, W. van , J. Tigchelaar & P. Ippel
    2012Wraking bottom-up. Een empirisch onderzoek. Den Haag: Raad voor de Rechtspraak.
    [Google Scholar]
  26. Ruskin, W. A.
    2014 Effective Use Of Rhetorical Questions In Jury Summation. LexisNexis® Legal Newsroom Litigation (website).
    [Google Scholar]
  27. Sala, M.
    2010 Interrogative forms as professional identity markers in legal research articles. In Garzone, G. & Archibald, J. (Eds.) Discourse, Identities and Roles in Specialized Communication, 301–320. Bern: Peter Lang.
    [Google Scholar]
  28. Schmidt-Radefeldt, J.
    1977 On so-called ’rhetorical questions’. Journal of Pragmatics, 1, 375–392. 10.1016/0378‑2166(77)90029‑7
    https://doi.org/10.1016/0378-2166(77)90029-7 [Google Scholar]
  29. Slot, P.
    1993How Can You Say That? Rhetorical Questions in Argumentative Texts. Amsterdam: IFOTT.
    [Google Scholar]
  30. Smith, M. R.
    2013Advanced Legal Writing. Theories and Strategies in Persuasive writing. New York: Wolters Kluwer Law & Business.
    [Google Scholar]
  31. Snoeck Henkemans, A. F.
    2006 Manoeuvring Strategically With Rhetorical Questions. In F. H. van Eemeren , J. A. Blair , C. A. Willard and B. Garssen (Eds.) Proceedings of the Sixth Conference of the International Society for the Study of Argumentation (ISSA). Amsterdam: Rozenberg. 1–11.
    [Google Scholar]
  32. Tiersma, P. M.
    2000Legal language. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  33. Tracy, K.
    2016Discourse, Identity and Social Change in the Marriage Equality Debates. New York: Oxford University Press. 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190217969.001.0001
    https://doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190217969.001.0001 [Google Scholar]

Data & Media loading...

This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was successful
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error