Negative and Positive Freedom

Kai Möller

in The Global Model of Constitutional Rights

Published in print October 2012 | ISBN: 9780199664603
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780191745751 | DOI:

Series: Oxford Constitutional Theory

Negative and Positive Freedom

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Chapter 2 argues that the value protected by constitutional rights must be positive freedom, or personal autonomy: in particular the doctrines of positive obligations and horizontal effect and the increasing acceptance of socio-economic rights indicate that the point of rights is to enable the people to live their lives autonomously, as opposed to disabling or limiting the government in certain ways. The chapter briefly discusses the values of equality and human dignity and concludes that while they may be useful and important for a theory of constitutional rights, they do not recommend themselves as the starting point of the reconstructive theory proposed in this book.

Keywords: Berlin; personal autonomy; positive freedom; human dignity; equality; horizontal effect; positive obligations; socio-economic rights

Chapter.  6194 words. 

Subjects: Constitutional and Administrative Law

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