Natural Law Anarchism
Studies in Emergent Order, Vol. 7, pp. 288-298, 2014
11 Pages Posted: 5 Feb 2015
Date Written: 2014
Gary Chartier’s book, Anarchy and Legal Order (Cambridge University Press, 2013), uses the resources of the natural law tradition in ethics to defend a vision of law without the state. It therefore presents a theory of what might be termed natural law anarchism. Some readers may find this combination of views surprising. The most prominent contemporary advocate of natural law theory, John Finnis, heavily emphasises the role of state institutions. However, Finnis’s theory arguably gives a misleading picture of the relationship between natural law and the state. Natural law theory is, in fact, highly hospitable to anarchism. This article begins by exploring the connections between these two ideas. I then look in more detail at some features of Chartier’s argument.
Keywords: Natural law, anarchism, statism, incommensurability, Chartier, Finnis
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation