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  1. Law is Not (Best Considered) an Essentially Contested Concept.Kenneth M. Ehrenberg - 2011 - International Journal of Law in Context 7:209-232.
    I argue that law is not best considered an essentially contested concept. After first explaining the notion of essential contestability and disaggregating the concept of law into several related concepts, I show that the most basic and general concept of law does not fit within the criteria generally offered for essential contestation. I then buttress this claim with the additional explanation that essential contestation is itself a framework for understanding complex concepts and therefore should only be applied when it is (...)
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  • Unlocking Legal Validity: Some Remarks on the Artificial Ontology of Law.Paolo Sandro - 2018 - In Anne Mackor, Stephan Kirste, Jaap Hage & Pauline Westerman (eds.), Legal Validity and Soft Law. Springer Verlag.
    Following Kelsen’s influential theory of law, the concept of validity has been used in the literature to refer to different properties of law (such as existence, membership, bindingness, and more), and so it is inherently ambiguous. More importantly, Kelsen’s equivalence between the existence and the validity of law prevents us from accounting satisfactorily for relevant aspects of our current legal practices, such as the phenomenon of “unlawful law.” This chapter addresses this ambiguity to argue that the most important function of (...)
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  • Can There Be an Artifact Theory of Law?Luka Burazin - 2016 - Ratio Juris 29 (3):385-401.
    The idea that particular legal institutions are artifacts is not new. However, the idea that the “law” or “legal system” is itself an artifact has seldom been directly put forward, due perhaps to the ambiguities surrounding philosophical inquiries into law. Nevertheless, such an idea has recently been invoked more often, though not always developed in detail in terms of what the characterization of the “law” or “legal system” as an artifact entails ontologically, and what consequences, if any, this has for (...)
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  • Functions in Jurisprudential Methodology.Kenneth M. Ehrenberg - 2013 - Philosophy Compass 8 (5):447-456.
    This paper guides the reader through the use of functions in contemporary legal philosophy: in developing those philosophies and through methodological debates over their proper role. This paper is broken into two sections. In the first I canvass the role of functions in the legal philosophies of several mid to late twentieth century Anglo-American general jurisprudents whose theories are still common topics of discussion: Ronald Dworkin, H.L.A. Hart, Lon L. Fuller, John Finnis, and Joseph Raz. In the second, I examine (...)
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