The Declaratory Theory of Law

(2013) 33 Oxford Journal of Legal Studies 421-444

24 Pages Posted: 26 Aug 2014

See all articles by Allan Beever

Allan Beever

Auckland University of Technology - Faculty of Business & Law

Date Written: August 25, 2013

Abstract

This article examines the declaratory theory of law and defends it from the most prominent modern attack on it. It explains that the real declaratory theory is not the caricature of it criticized in modern writing and that, in fact, the theory properly understood is remarkably close to the position adopted by some of the theory’s most notable opponents. The article further examines the common law’s continuing commitment to the declaratory theory, a commitment that remains strong despite the considerable hostility of the academy. It explains that this commitment reflects the nature of the common law.

Keywords: common law, legal philosophy, legal theory, legal reasoning, legal history

Suggested Citation

Beever, Allan, The Declaratory Theory of Law (August 25, 2013). (2013) 33 Oxford Journal of Legal Studies 421-444 . Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2486980

Allan Beever (Contact Author)

Auckland University of Technology - Faculty of Business & Law ( email )

3 Wakefield Street
Private Bag 92006
Auckland Central 1020
New Zealand

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