What Does ‘Legal Obligation’ Mean?

Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 99 (4):790-816 (2018)

Authors
Daniel Wodak
Virginia Tech
Abstract
What do normative terms like “obligation” mean in legal contexts? On one view, which H.L.A. Hart may have endorsed, “obligation” is ambiguous in moral and legal contexts. On another, which is dominant in jurisprudence, “obligation” has a distinctively moralized meaning in legal contexts. On a third view, which is often endorsed in philosophy of language, “obligation” has a generic meaning in moral and legal con- texts. After making the nature of and disagreements between these views precise, I show how linguistic data militates against both rivals to the generic meaning view, and argue that this has significant implications for jurisprudence.
Keywords legal obligation  semantics of legal language  Raz  Kratzer  Hart
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DOI 10.1111/papq.12230
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References found in this work BETA

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Thinking How to Live.Allan Gibbard - 2003 - Philosophical Review 116 (2):267-272.
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The Concept of Law.Stuart M. Brown & H. L. A. Hart - 1963 - Philosophical Review 72 (2):250.

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Citations of this work BETA

Mere Formalities: Normative Fictions and Normative Authority.Daniel Wodak - forthcoming - Canadian Journal of Philosophy:1-23.

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