In order to maximize the possibility of gaining as clear a picture as possible of the development of Jewish law, a scholar must use a number of different sources for his or her research. The researcher must not limit him or herself to Talmudic literature and halakhic codes, rather, he or she must also examine the responsa literature, commentaries, and communal enactments (takkanot). Any source that will help us to understand the intellectual and social background of the law is important.
Michael Pitkowsky, ”Mipenei Darkhei Shalom (Because of the Paths of Peace) and Related Terms: A Case Study of How Early Concepts and Terminology Developed From Tannaitic to Talmudic Literature” (PhD. diss., Jewish Theological Seminary, 2011), 25.