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Chapter

This chapter explores the main currents in legal philosophy following Hart, focusing on the work of Dworkin and Raz. It begins with overviews of the philosophies of law of Dworkin and Raz. The chapter then discusses Dworkin and Raz on rules and principles; Dworkin’s theory of law; whether lawyers are moral philosophers; Raz and the authority of law; and the impact of the work of Dworkin and Raz.

Chapter

This chapter discusses the essential elements of Dworkin’s theory of law. It focuses on Dworkin’s assault on positivism and his insistence upon the close relationship between morals and the law. By denying the positivist separation between law and morals, he expounds a theory that rejects the proposition that judges either do or should make law, and contends instead that judges have an obligation to find and express ‘the soundest theory of law’ on which to decide hard cases; and concludes that, since judges (who are unelected officials) do not make law, the judicial role is democratic and prospective. His approach is based on the notion that only by adopting this view of the judicial function can the law take rights seriously.

Chapter

This chapter discusses the essential elements of Dworkin’s theory of law. It focuses on Dworkin’s assault on positivism. Dworkin denies the positivist separation between law and morals; rejects the proposition that judges either do or should make law; argues that judges must seek ‘the soundest theory of law’ on which to decide hard cases; and concludes that, since judges (who are unelected officials) do not make law, the judicial role is democratic and prospective. A central aspect of his theory is the importance of individual rights based on the idea that everyone is entitled to equal concern and respect. This leads him to analyse closely the concept of equality and its relation to liberty.