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The Concept of Law

The Concept of Law (3rd edn)

HLA Hart, Joseph Raz, and Penelope A. Bulloch
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date: 20 August 2022

Postscriptlocked

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  • H. L. A. HartH. L. A. Hartlate Professor of Jurisprudence, Principal of Brasenose College, and Fellow of University College, University of Oxford

Abstract

Celebrated for their conceptual clarity, titles in the Clarendon Law Series offer concise, accessible overviews of major fields of law and legal thought. This Postscript attempts to reply to some of the criticisms urged by R. M. Dworkin in many of the seminal articles collected in his Taking Rights Seriously (1977) and A Matter of Principle (1985) and in his book Law's Empire (1986). The focus is on Dworkin's criticisms because he has not only argued that nearly all the distinctive theses of this book are radically mistaken, but he has called in question the whole conception of legal theory and of what it should do which is implicit in the book. The first part of the Postscript is concerned with Dworkin's arguments. The second part considers the claims of a number of other critics that, in the author's exposition of some of his theses, there are not only obscurities and inaccuracies but at certain points actual incoherence and contradiction.

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