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date: 06 October 2022

p. 29310. Rightslocked

p. 29310. Rightslocked

  • Raymond WacksRaymond WacksEmeritus Professor of Law and Legal Theory, University of Hong Kong


One of the most important, complex, and controversial concepts in legal theory is that of a ‘right’. Apart from the analytical discussion, there is an inevitable debate concerning the difference between what constitutes a right, on the one hand, and what rights individuals or groups actually have or should have, on the other. This distinction between analytical and normative jurisprudence recurs throughout the literature. This chapter explores the concept of rights, various theories and types of rights (including human and animal rights), and concludes with a brief exercise in ‘applied jurisprudence’ that demonstrates how ostensibly competing approaches to a central democratic right are played out.

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