Legal Protection of the Value of Public Morality: The Hart-Devlin Debate
10 Pages Posted: 2 Feb 2016
Date Written: January 31, 2015
One of the most famous legal discussions was the Devlin-Hart debate in the late 1950s in England. It seems that even nowadays not only liberal but also conservative aspects of understanding the law are still important for the law-makers (freedoms and rights v. tradition and integration). I propose to go back to Lord Patrick Devlin’s theory of law and Herbert Hart's critique (with Ronald Dworkin's support). My aim is also to analyse the value of public morality in law in general. Should we protect public morality by law? Why? What is public morality then? The debate showed us some universal insights on this value.
Keywords: law, morality, public morality, value
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