Natural Law and the Basic Norm of the Irish Constitution

(2012) 30 (19) Irish Law Times 298-300

Posted: 29 Nov 2012

See all articles by Alan Greene

Alan Greene

University of Birmingham - Birmingham Law School

Date Written: December 1, 2012

Abstract

This paper deals with the relationship between the basic norm of the Irish Constitution as conceived of by Hans Kelsen, and natural law. I argue that the basic norm of the Irish Constitution is 'one ought to obey the Irish constitution' and not 'one ought to obey the natural law'. I reach this conclusion by arguing firstly that the natural law cannot invalidate a provision of the Irish constitution and secondly one cannot conceptually describe the basic norm of a legal order as 'one ought to obey the natural law' as such would be repugnant to Kelsen's positivist conception of the legal order.

Keywords: Natural Law, Hans Kelsen, Basic Norm, Grundnorm, Irish Constitution, Jurisprudence, Constitutional Law, Pure Theory of Law, Positivism, Ireland, Public Law

Suggested Citation

Greene, Alan, Natural Law and the Basic Norm of the Irish Constitution (December 1, 2012). (2012) 30 (19) Irish Law Times 298-300 , Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2181455

Alan Greene (Contact Author)

University of Birmingham - Birmingham Law School ( email )

Edgbaston
Birmingham, AL B15 2TT
United Kingdom

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