Law in General

John Gardner

in Law as a Leap of Faith

Published in print September 2012 | ISBN: 9780199695553
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780191741296 | DOI:
Law in General

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This chapter reflects on the overarching theme of the book that there are general truths about law, facts that are true of it wherever it may be found. This claim strikes some as running up against the diversity of legal experience, often explored by sociologists of law. The chapter stands up for the compatibility of (and indeed common concerns of) legal philosophy and legal sociology. It also advances a broadly Hartian view of the respects in which law is a social form, one which helps to explain the variety of legal systems. At the same time this view sets limits on the variety, for there must be some invariant truths about law that helps to explain how it is capable of all this variety. The chapter reasserts the modal character of law (from Chapter 8) and resists the rival functionalist tendency to classify as law whatever shares the social functions of law.

Keywords: philosophy; sociology; variety; generality; society; modal; functional; concept

Chapter.  13297 words. 

Subjects: Jurisprudence and Philosophy of Law

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