The Normative Fallacy Regarding Law’s Authority
New York University School of Law
August 28, 2012
Wil Waluchow and Stefan Sciaraffa (eds.), Philosophical Foundations of the Nature of Law, Oxford University Press, 2013, Forthcoming
The philosophical treatment of socio-political concepts is susceptible to a methodological fallacy, consisting of an illicit move from statements in moral theory to statements about social and political facts. This fallacy — the normative fallacy — can be found in legal philosophy as well. In this essay I discuss the normative fallacy regarding law’s authority, criticize Raz’s theory of de facto authority as committing this fallacy, and consider the importance of law’s de facto authority (which can be quite different from its moral, rightful authority) to legal philosophy.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 34
Keywords: general jurisprudence, Raz, authority, normative fallacy, de facto, legitimate, rightful, practical matrixAccepted Paper Series
Date posted: September 23, 2012 ; Last revised: November 20, 2012
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