Chapter

Legal Powers

H. L. A. Hart

in Essays on Bentham

Published in print November 1982 | ISBN: 9780198254683
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191681509 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198254683.003.0009
Legal Powers

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Bentham starts his analysis with the reduction of all legal powers to two main kinds, the second of which, though different from the first, is dependent upon it. These two kinds at first sight seem only to reflect the notion that there may be power over inanimate things as well as power over persons. But Bentham is too perceptive to make what would, in this context, be a misleading distinction, because he sees that persons up to a point are like inanimate things: they have after all physical bodies which can be handled or interfered with, moved or confined like things.

Keywords: legal powers; inanimate things; Bentham; legal system; legislation; contracts

Chapter.  10681 words. 

Subjects: Jurisprudence and Philosophy of Law

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