The Philosophy of Law: A Very Short Introduction

The Philosophy of Law: A Very Short Introduction

Paperback Very Short Introductions

By (author) Raymond Wacks

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  • Publisher: Oxford University Press
  • Format: Paperback | 144 pages
  • Dimensions: 113mm x 173mm x 7mm | 120g
  • Publication date: 22 June 2006
  • Publication City/Country: Oxford
  • ISBN 10: 0192806912
  • ISBN 13: 9780192806918
  • Sales rank: 42,432

Product description

The concept of law lies at the heart of our social and political life, shaping the character of our community and underlying issues from racism and abortion to human rights and international war. But what actually is law? A set of naturally occurring moral principles, or simply rules agreed by a particular society? What is a 'right' and what rights should people actually have? Is law really colour-blind and gender-blind? Can the law truly tell us whether gay marriages are immoral, what's wrong with racism, or whether we should go to war? Revealing the intriguing and challenging nature of legal philosophy with clarity and enthusiasm, Raymond Wacks explores the notion of law and its role in our lives. Referring to key thinkers from Aristotle to Rawls, Bentham, Dworkin, H.L.A. Hart and Derrida, he looks at the central questions behind legal theory that have fascinated lawyers and philosophers - and anyone - who ever wondered about law's relation to justice, morality, and democracy. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

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Author information

Raymond Wacks is Emeritus Professor of Law and Legal Theory at the University of Hong Kong. He has published numerous books and articles on various aspects of law, including Jurisprudence and Understanding Jurisprudence: An Introduction to Legal Theory.

Table of contents

Introduction ; 1. Natural law ; 2. Legal positivism ; 3. Law as interpretation ; 4. Rights and justice ; 5. Law and society ; 6. Critical legal theory