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Between Authority and Interpretation


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Table of Contents

1: Introduction I: Methodological Issues 2: Can there be a Theory of Law? 3: Two Views of the Nature of the Theory of Law: A Partial Comparison II: Law, Authority and Morality 4: On the Nature of Law 5: The Problem of Authority: Revisiting the Service Conception 6: About Morality and the Nature of Law 7: Incorporation by Law 8: Reasoning with Rules III: Interpretation 9: Why Interpret? 10: Interpretation Without Retrieval 11: Intention in Interpretation 12: Interpretation: Pluralism and Innovation 13: On the Authority and Interpretation of Constitutions: Some Preliminaries Appendix 14: Postema on Law's Autonomy and Public Practical Reasons: A Critical Comment

About the Author

Joseph Raz has been teaching in Oxford since 1972. He has held a chair in the philosophy of law since 1985, and has been a Research Professor since 2006. He has also held a professorship at Columbia University since 2002. He is a fellow of the British Academy and a Foreign Honorary Member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.


`Review from previous edition Joseph Raz is the creator of a distinctive, powerful and appealing philosophical vision, further defended and elaborated in this fine collection of sixteen essays.' Henry Shue, The Philosophical Review, Vol 106, no3 (July 1997) `An excellent exposure to Raz's recent thoughts ... Raz offers sharp opinions in clear and unpretentious prose ... the book can be easily sampled, and it presents an important viewpoint, not only for specialists but for anyone who cares about the moral dimension of politics and law.' London Review of Books `Even in brief encapsulation, the vigour of Raz's arguments is plain. These further explorations of the elegant and attractive version of liberalism he advanced a few years ago in The Morality of Freedom are fully up to standard.' Times Literary Supplement `If the test for the success of a volume of essays is whether or not they `hang together' as a whole, then the book is a winner ... It is often tightly argued, candid and thought-provoking, almost always seeking to take the argument a few steps further while scrupulously examining the snags of so doing. In other words, it is what we have come to expect from Raz.' Modern Law Review `The essays remind one how subtle, unpretentious and constructive 'analytical' political philosophy can be when practised with such intelligence, care and seriousness of one interested in contemporary liberal theory or the philosophy of law could fail to learn a very great deal from these exemplary essays.' Political Studies `An excellent exposure to Raz's recent thoughts ... Raz offers sharp opinions in clear and unpretentious prose' London Review of Books `The genius of Joseph Rax lies in his capacity to deploy rigorous and original analysis in relation to long-standing and seemingly irresolvable conceptual, explanatory, and sometimes normative problems in ways which deliver insight and arouse admiration...Those interested in law and society may be particularly interested in the sociological starting point of the analysis of law as a source of authoritative guidance and the explanations on offer regarding the claimed necessary features of the concept of law that depend on what might be seen as either the social utility or the function of law, depending on whether the explanations are interpreted in either normative or in functionalist terms' Tom Campbell, Journal of Law and Society `...thought-provoking...interesting and may spark off some new ideas.' Eleanor Haely Birt

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