Ross and Olivecrona on Rights
Australian Journal of Legal Philosophy, 2009
18 Pages Posted: 23 Mar 2006 Last revised: 18 Feb 2009
Date Written: December 26, 2007
Scandinavian legal realism was a movement of the early and middle decades of the 20th century, which paralleled the American legal realist movement, while presenting a more skeptical challenge to legal reasoning and discourse. The present paper was written for a forthcoming Oxford University Press collection on the Scandinavian realists. The approach to jurisprudence of Scandinavian realists Alf Ross and Karl Olivecrona was simultaneously simple and radical: they wanted to rid our thinking about law of all the mystifying references to abstract concepts and metaphysical entities. This paper offers a critical overview of Ross's and Olivecrona's views on legal rights, while also summarizing the critiques of those views (e.g., by H.L.A. Hart and Joseph Raz).
Keywords: legal rights, Scandinavian legal realism, Alf Ross, Karl Olivecrona
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