Carlo Focarelli

in International Law as Social Construct

Published in print May 2012 | ISBN: 9780199584833
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191741012 | DOI:

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This chapter shows that law is a process inspired by a ‘working’ reason operating in and for society. It argues that certain legal arguments are indeed better than others in society. Theoretical reason ultimately depends on the meanings prevailing in the particular society in which it operates. Formal justice is relative to social context and, like theoretical reason, is used to appropriate universal truth. Practical reason is the reason that works in society. It mainly consists of common sense, social attunement, pre-comprehension, and consideration for the rules of the game prevailing in any particular society. It also amounts to prudence. The discussion concludes that the law must work in people's daily life as they see their own life rather than in the minds of single individuals, no matter how enlightened or learned.

Keywords: legal arguments; law; theoretical reason; practical reason; common sense; social attunement; formal justice; prudence

Chapter.  13443 words. 

Subjects: Public International Law

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