Revus 29 (29) (2016)

Authors
Vojko Strahovnik
University of Ljubljana
Abstract
The paper discusses the notion of defeasibility and focuses specifically on defeasible norms. First, it delineates a robust notion of the phenomenon of defeasibility, which poses a serious problem for both moral and legal theory. It does this by laying out the conditions and desiderata that a model of defeasibility should be able to meet. It further focuses on a specific model of defeasibility that utilises the notion of normal conditions to expound the robust notion of defeasibility. It argues that this model fails in its attempt to do this, particularly since it presupposes further pertinent norms and we have reasons to doubt if these are defeasible. It thus does not allow defeasibility to go “all the way down” in the normative domain and limits it merely to a feature of some sort of mid-level norm. In conclusion, it draws lessons from this and positions defeasibility models within a more general pluralistic approach to norms.
Keywords exceptions   normalcy   normal conditions   moral norms   legal norms   pluralism
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