The Concept of a Legal System: An Introduction to the Theory of Legal System

The Concept of a Legal System: An Introduction to the Theory of Legal System

The Concept of a Legal System: An Introduction to the Theory of Legal System

The Concept of a Legal System: An Introduction to the Theory of Legal System

Synopsis

What does it mean to assert or deny the existence of a legal system? How can one determine whether a given law belongs to a certain legal system? What kind of structure do these systems have, that is--what necessary relations obtain between their laws? The examination of these problems in this volume leads to a new approach to traditional jurisprudential question, though the conclusions are based on a critical appraisal, particularly those of Bentham, Austin, Kelsen, and Hart.

Excerpt

This book is based on a doctoral thesis submitted at the University of Oxford. I wish to acknowledge my great indebtedness to Prof. H. L. A. Hart. I learnt much from his published works, from his lectures, and most of all from his very patient and detailed criticism of previous drafts of this study. I am also most grateful to him for his constant encouragement and guidance.

I am greatly indebted to Dr. P. M. Hacker, with whom I had many illuminating conversations on the topics discussed, and to Dr. A. Kenny, who read and commented on two papers I wrote on Bentham and Kelsen; these served as a basis for some of the material in Chapters 3-5.

My stay at Oxford was made possible by the Hebrew University, Jerusalem, which secured the necessary funds, and especially by the kind attention and interest of Mr. E. Posnansky.

Both Professor Hart and Dr. Hacker read previous drafts of the book, and if it were not for their pains there would be many more mistakes and stylistic infelicities in the English than in fact remain.

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