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On Identifying the Law and Its Supposed Conventional Foundations. A Set-Theory Approach

  • Giovanni Battista RattiEmail author
Chapter
Part of the Law and Philosophy Library book series (LAPS, volume 126)

Abstract

The paper explores some possible applications of some elementary notions of set theory (such as “intersection”, “union”, and “difference”) to two age-old and intertwined problems of legal philosophy: the identification of law and the rational reconstruction of an ultimate rule of recognition. The main results of the inquiry are the following. (1) Contrary to a widespread view, “law” does not denote a unitary set of rules, but rather a family of sets, the main relations among which are examined in the paper. (2) Contrary to what the strong version of legal conventionalism advocates, there is a conceptual space to regard the rule of recognition as the overlapping of several sets of criteria of identification that are used within a certain community. Amongst other things, this thesis renders the famous Dworkin’s critique against conventionalism harmless.

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of LawTarello Institute for Legal Philosophy, University of GenoaGenoaItaly

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