Raquel Barradas de Freitas

Guest Professor

Biographical Note | Pedagogical Experience Research Areas

Raquel Barradas de Freitas was awarded a DPhil in Law by the University of Oxford in 2014, with a dissertation titled “Explaining Meaning: Towards a Minimalist Account of Legal Interpretation“, supervised by Professor John Gardner.

She was Max Weber Fellow at the Law Department of the European University Institute, in Florence, in 2017-2018 and Research Lecturer in Jurisprudence and Public Law ad Trinity College (2019-2020) and Balliol College (2020-2022), University of Oxford.

Raquel currently works as a Law Clerk to the President of the Portuguese Constitutional Court and as Lecturer in Jurisprudence at Trinity College, Oxford.

She also holds visiting teaching posts at Católica School of Law and NOVA School of Law (Lisbon).

Courses currently taught:

  • Three Forms of Injustice: New Work in Legal and Political Philosophy, NOVA School of Law (September 2022- February 2023) – Master’s (taught in English)
  • Legal English (Fundamental Legal Concepts), NOVA School of Law (September 2022- February 2023), Master’s (taught in English)
  • Introdução ao Direito Segundo o Método do Caso (co-taught with Gonçalo Almeida Ribeiro, Patrícia Fragoso Martins, Pedro Garcia Marques, Martinho Lucas Pires, Tito Rendas), Católica Lisbon School of Law (September 2022- February 2023) – Undergraduate (taught in Portuguese)
  • Fundamental Rights and Constitutional Justice, Católica Lisbon School of Law (January – July 2023) – Undergraduate (taught in English)
  • Jurisprudence, Trinity College, University of Oxford (January – July 2023) – Undergraduate

Courses taught in the past:

  • University of Oxford (2009-2022): Jurisprudence, European Union Law, Administrative Law, Constitutional Law (core undergraduate)
  • University College London (2014-2020): Legal Theory (core undergraduate)
  • NOVA School of Law (2003-2004): Philosophy of Law (core undergraduate)

Alongside the courses listed, Raquel has supervised and co-supervised undergraduate and graduate dissertations in the philosophy of punishment, philosophy of law, political philosophy/philosophical foundations of public law, and constitutional theory.

Primary research interests:

  • General jurisprudence, with a focus on interpretation, reasoning (practical and theoretical) and reasons, authority, rules and norms, judicial decision making and, in particular, the justification of judicial decisions.
  • Conceptual connections between authority and trust: epistemic, psychological, moral, interpersonal, and political dimensions of trust and trustworthiness. Conditions for warranted trust in legal officials in the context of judicial decision making; judicial accountability, judicial duties to interpret and justify decisions.
  • Connections between trust and vulnerability
  • Constitutional scrutiny and constitutional interpretation
  • Empirical work on courts
  • Virtue theory, virtue ethics
  • The judicial role
  • The moral emotions