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Ideas of H.L.A. Hart, by Text

[British, 1907 - 1992, Professor of Law at Oxford University.]

1961 The Concept of Law
p.103 Hart replaced positivism with the democratic requirement of the people's acceptance
     Full Idea: Hart replaced Austin's concept of positive law as sovereign command with a more democratic ideal. In modern law-based societies the authority of law depends on the people's acceptance of a law's enduring validity.
     From: report of H.L.A. Hart (The Concept of Law [1961]) by Jens Zimmermann - Hermeneutics: a very short introduction 6 'Hart'
     A reaction: Presumably the ancestor of this view is the social contract of Hobbes and Locke.
p.104 Positive law needs secondary 'rules of recognition' for their correct application
     Full Idea: Hart says we have secondary legal 'rules of recognition', by which primary positive law is recognised and applied in a regulated manner.
     From: report of H.L.A. Hart (The Concept of Law [1961]) by Jens Zimmermann - Hermeneutics: a very short introduction 6 'Rules'
     A reaction: The example of the authority of a particular court is given.
p.363 Hart (against Bentham) says human rights are what motivate legal rights
     Full Idea: Whereas Bentham saw rights as a 'child of law', Herbert Hart's view takes the form of seeing human rights as, in effect, 'parents of law'; they motivate specific legislations.
     From: report of H.L.A. Hart (The Concept of Law [1961]) by Amartya Sen - The Idea of Justice 17 'Ethics'
     A reaction: [He cites Hart 1955 'Are there any natural rights?'] I agree with Hart. It is clearer if the parents of law are not referred to as 'rights'. You can demand a right, but it is only a right when it is awarded to you.