Toward a New Framework for Understanding Political Opinion

This paper was written to frame the work of the Seventh Colloquium on Challenges in International Refugee Law, held at the University of Michigan Faculty of Law, on March 27–29, 2015. To some extent, therefore, it has already served its purpose. It is somewhat tempting in the wake of the Colloquium to completely reconstruct the paper in light of the conversations and conclusions of that event. Such reconstruction, however, would be misleading. Instead, I have chosen to publish the paper in a form that is very similar to its earlier iteration, with a few corrections, clarifications, and explanatory notes about some key pieces that formed part of the Colloquium conversation.