Law Is the Command of the Sovereign: H. L. A. Hart Reconsidered

Ratio Juris 29 (3):364-384 (2016)
Download Edit this record How to cite View on PhilPapers
Abstract
This article presents a critical reevaluation of the thesis – closely associated with H.L.A. Hart, and central to the views of most recent legal philosophers – that the idea of state coercion is not logically essential to the definition of law. The author argues that even laws governing contracts must ultimately be understood as “commands of the sovereign, backed by force”. This follows in part from recognition that the “ sovereign ”, defined rigorously, at the highest level of abstraction, is that person or entity identified by reference to game theory and the philosophical idea of “convention” as the source of signals to which the subject population has become effectively locked, as a group, into conformity.
Categories
PhilPapers/Archive ID
MORLIT-3
Revision history
Archival date: 2015-11-21
View upload history
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Added to PP index
2015-03-01

Total downloads
2,694 ( #264 of 36,570 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
1,023 ( #158 of 36,570 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Monthly downloads since first upload
This graph includes both downloads from PhilArchive and clicks to external links.