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Hans Kelsen and the Natural Law Tradition provides the first sustained examination of Hans Kelsen’s critical engagement, itself founded upon a distinctive theory of legal positivism, with the Natural Law Tradition. This edited collection commences with a comprehensive introduction which establishes the character of Kelsen’s critical engagement as a general critique of natural law combined with a more specific critique of representative thinkers of the Natural Law Tradition. The subsequent chapters are then devoted to a detailed analysis of Kelsen’s engagement with prominent theorists from the Natural Law Tradition. The volume concludes with an exploration, focusing upon the delineation of a non-positivist legal theory in the debate between Robert Alexy and Joseph Raz, of the continued presence of Kelsenian legal positivism in contemporary legal theory.
A Practical Legal Theory from Contemporary China
Author: Zhiwei Tong
In Right, Power, and Faquanism, Tong Zhiwei proposes that right and power are ultimately a unified entity which can be named “faquan,” and that the purpose of law should be to establish a balanced faquan structure and to promote its preservation and proliferation. “Faquan” is thus a jurisprudential category reflecting the understanding of the unity of right and power. It has interest protected by the law and property with defined ownership as its content, and manifests itself as the external forms of jural right, freedom, liberty, jural power, public function, authority, competence, privilege, and immunity, etc. Faquanism relies mainly on six basic concepts (faquan, right, power, quan, residual quan and duty) to analyze the content of interests and property in all legal phenomena.
Author: Hanna H. Wei
In A Dialogical Concept of Minority Rights, Hanna H. Wei demonstrates that a more plausible and realistic concept of minority rights should consist of not only rights against the state but also rights against the group. She formulates and defends three separate but related rights to dialogue, and thoroughly analyses how they may operate not only to maintain a healthy balance between the minorities’ need to be culturally distinct and their need to relate to and belong in the larger society, but also that they address the generalisations and presuppositions on which the debate of multiculturalism has been based, and constitute the first step of a possible solution to many of the theoretical and practical difficulties of minority protection.
Author: Harald Stelzer
"Gegenstand dieses Buches ist die Analyse und Kritik der Moralphilosophie des Kommunitarismus, deren grundlegende Fragestellungen nach wie vor von hoher Aktualität sind. Führt das liberalistische Verständnis von Mensch und Gesellschaft zur Auflösung sozialer Bindungen? Benötigen wir eine Revitalisierung der Gemeinschaften mit ihren jeweiligen Werten? Muss das Ideal der Neutralität des Staates aufgegeben werden? Der Autor zeigt in umfassender Weise, dass einige Annahmen des Kommunitarismus durchaus plausibel sind, dass sich seine zentralen Thesen aber nicht aufrechterhalten lassen. Der Kommunitarismus unterschätzt die potentiellen Gefahren zu enger Gemeinschaftsbindungen. Die ihm zugrunde liegende Philosophie erweist sich als relativistisch und darüber hinaus als widersprüchlich. In der Auseinandersetzung mit dem Kommunitarismus entwickelt der Autor eine Theorie der Normbegründung, die auf dem Verfahren des Überlegungsgleichgewichts sowie dem Fallibilismus beruht. Damit leistet er nicht nur einen wichtigen Beitrag zur Liberalismus-Kommunitarismus-Debatte, sondern darüber hinaus zur Weiterentwicklung einer problemlösungsorientieren Ethik, die in ihren Grundlagen auf die Politische Philosophie, Wissenschaftstheorie und evolutionäre Erkenntnistheorie Karl Poppers verweist."
Volker Gadenne, University of Linz


In Eine Kritik der kommunitaristischen Moralphilosophie. Offene Gesellschaft – Geschlossene Gemeinschaft analysiert Harald Stelzer die grundlegenden Aspekte der normativen Theorien von kommunitaristischen Autoren wie MacIntryre, Sandel, Taylor und Walzer. Basierend auf einer Rekonstruktion ihrer Kritik am Liberalismus und ihrer Sehnsucht nach der Gemeinschaft geht Stelzer auf die staatliche Neutralität ebenso ein wie auf die Reichweite der gemeinschaftlichen Einbettung des Individuums. Weiter diskutiert der Autor den Nah- und Fernhorizont der Ethik wie auch die relativistischen Konsequenzen eines auf der Annahme der Inkommensurabilität von Moralsystemen beruhenden kommunitaristischen Partikularismus. Das Buch endet mit einem Aufriss von Stelzers eigener Position, die beruhend auf dem Fallibilismus von Karl Popper und dem weiten Überlegungsgleichgewicht von John Rawls Moral als Problemlösungsprozess auffasst.

In A Critique of the Moral Philosophy of Communitarianism. Open Society – Closed Community Harald Stelzer challenges communitarian authors like MacIntryre, Sandel, Taylor, and Walzer by analysing main aspects of their moral theories. Based on the reconstruction of their critique of liberalism and alternative communitarian accounts, Stelzer looks on state neutrality as well as on the scope of the social embeddedness of the individual. He then proceeds to discuss the far and near horizon of ethics as well as the relativistic consequences of a communitarian particularism based on the underlying assumption of incommensurability. In the last chapter, Stelzer provides his own account of a problem solving ethics by combining Karl Popper’s fallibilism with the wide reflective equilibrium of John Rawls.

This book brings together a collection of social justice scholars and activists who take Foucault’s concept of discipline and punishment to explain how prisons are constructed in society from nursing homes to zoos. This book expands the concept of prison to include any institution that dominates, oppresses, and controls. Criminologists and others, who have been concerned with reforming or dismantling the criminal justice system, have mostly avoided to look at larger carceral structures in society. In this book, for example, scholars and activists question the way patriarchy has incapacitated women and imagine the deinstitutionalization of people with disabilities. In a time when popular sentiment critiques the dominant role of the elites (the “one percenters”), the state’s role in policing dissenting voices, school children, LGBTQ persons, people of color, and American Indian Nations, needs to be investigated. A prison, as defined in this book, is an institution or system that oppresses and does not allow freedom for a particular group. Within this definition, we include the imprisonment of nonhuman animals and plants, which are too often overlooked.
Editor: Harry Lesser
The authors of these papers vary in age, nationality and professional background. They share a belief that all too often older people are not treated justly or fairly, and also a belief that this is particularly true with regard to a proper respect for their dignity as people and a proper allocation of medical and social resources. Their papers, in various ways, give evidence as to what is happening and arguments, based on philosophical ethics, as to why it is wrong. The authors also have a range of proposals, backed by argument and evidence, and drawing on factual material as well as philosophical argument, as to what could be done to improve the situation. This is a book for anyone, whether themselves elderly, looking after an older person, professionally involved in working with older people, or simply realising that one day they will be old, who wants to learn about what is wrong with the present situation and how it might be made better.
A clear understanding of social justice requires complex rather than simple answers. It requires comfort with ambiguity rather than absolute answers. This is counter to viewing right versus wrong, just vs. unjust, or good vs. evil as dichotomies. This book provides many examples of where and how to begin to view these as continuums rather than dichotomies.
Author: Maurice Hauriou
Tradition in Social Science is the social philosophy written early in life by the jurisprudent who became the preeminent public law jurist in France in the first quarter of the twentieth century, Maurice Hauriou. His work remains prominent in theorizing European Community as well as in Latin American jurisprudence. His studies concern three areas of research: legal theory, social science, and philosophy. In this book Hauriou first focuses on the object and method of the social sciences in a preliminary chapter. The main text is devoted first to a philosophy of history that uses the growth objectively in fraternity, liberty and equality as the criterion for progress; and next to the subjective elements of progress, namely, the recognition of a “pessimistic individualism” in which failure in conduct is to be expected, but is rectified by social institutions. This part closes with the dynamizing of his philosophy of history by evolution and alternation between two phases of social development, namely, middle ages and renaissances. The second part is the philosophy of social science built around social matter, where the dynamic of imitation is the motive force, and three social networks—positive, religious, and metaphysical—specify its consequences. The last of these, the political fabric, is provided with a final chapter of its own. The main doctrinal device that Hauriou developed for use in law was his theory of the institution; this is developed for the first time in the present work.
This book presents Cicero's natural law theory, including valuable definitions of the state, the ideal state, the ideal ruler, and the laws for the ideal state. Explanations are offered of the Greek sources of Cicero's republican philosophy, his influence on the Principate of Augustus, and his role in the development of modern political philosophy. As all the ages of the world have not produced a greater statesman and philosopher united than Cicero, his authority should have great weight (John Adams, 1787).
Illustrated. Translated from Latin and Edited by Giorgio Pinton and Margaret Diehl
This book is the first translation from Latin into English of the juridical writings of one of the greatest minds of the Enlightenment and one of the greatest figures in Italian philosophy. The complete text is fully annotated, supplied with an extensive introduction, completed by historical and biographical documents, and graced with evocative illustrations. Legal scholars, philosophers, historians, and political scientists throughout the world may now discover a classic by one of the world’s great jurists.

Giambattista Vico (1668-1744) spent his entire life in Naples, where he taught at the University of Naples from 1699, the year he won the Chair of Rhetoric and Forensic Eloquence, to 1741, the year Gennaro Vico, his son, took over the duty of lecturer. In 1723, after having written the Universal Right, he competed, though without success, for the Chair of Civil Law, at the same University. He wrote the Universal Right in Latin, the official and universal language of scholarly works, to prove his competency in the field of law and jurisprudence. The Universal Right had a continuous relevance to the development and growth of juristic studies, both in Italy and in Europe, where it was translated into French and German. From the eighteenth to the twentieth century, the Universal Right influenced the writings and teaching of the practitioners of the Forum—Emmanuele Duni, Antonio Genovesi, Jules Michelet, Francesco Lomonaco, Mario Francesco Pagano, Gian Domenico Romagnosi, Cesare Lombroso, Pasquale Galluppi, Cesare Beccaria, and, among the many recent jurists, Emilio Betti, who taught in Italy and Germany, the author of Allgemeine Auslegungslehre als Methodik der Geisteswissenschaften. Due to the influence of Benedetto Croce’s disapproving interpretation, the Universal Right remained often overshadowed by the New Science in its three editions of 1725, 1730, and 1744. As we start the twenty-first century, scholars are by-passing Croce’s statement, and are looking at the Universal Right with due objectivity and renewed interest. While the New Science has been available since 1948, the Universal Right appears now, for the first time, in English, the contemporary universal language. Contrary to the opinion of some scholars, Vico, in the New Science, stated that he did not regret having written the Universal Right; he used the copy in his possession as a reference manual for all the works written afterward, until 1735. Andrea Battistini wrote, “When an English translation of the Diritto universale [Universal Right] is available, which will be able to rectify the trend toward contemporary relevance with a greater sense of historicity through an emphasis on the debt to Roman jurisprudence, one will finally arrive at a synthetic overall view, obscured today by the numerous specialized analyses. At all events, however, it is to be hoped that the multiplicity of voices, the dialectical battle of interpretations and the duel between historicity and contemporary relevance do not subside”. Isaiah Berlin stated that, “Vico was not read,” and, thus, his ideas were the treasure-trove in the hands of a few specialists and, in like manner, they remained to our day. Other scholars have mentioned the “copiatori di [copycats of] Vico” when speaking about the history and transmission of ideas. In regard to Universal Right, contemporary research and writing is pale and scarce, given the unavailability of translations and the difficulties of the original.