Central parts of the natural law theories of Grotius and Pufendorf assume that persons by nature have individual realms of their own, violations of which constitute a wrong. This is the basis for their accounts of promises, ownership and reactions against wrongs. These accounts are significantly independent of any assumption that a superior being imposes obligations: rather, the individuals themselves create obligations by their own acts of will. The translator's introducton draws attention to the author's relation to Hägerström, and remarks (...) briefly on related points in Ames, Köhler and Georges Davy. (shrink)
This paper discusses the place of philosophical naturalism in the philosophy of law, with special reference to Scandinavian Realism. Hägerström originated a non-cognitivist analysis of certain fundamental legal concepts, but he also proposed an error theory. The two approaches are incompatible, but were not always clearly distinguished. Among his followers, Olivecrona and Ross gradually abandoned the latter, at least from the late 1940s. Many accounts of their views are unclear, because the presence of these two kinds of analysis, their incompatibility, (...) and the gradual abandonment of one, has often been overlooked. A corollary of the discussion is that there are some important corrigenda in the entry “Naturalism in legal philosophy” in the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. (shrink)
Statements to the effect that a certain law exists are generally considered to be statements of certain contingent, empirical facts. We will discuss a particular view of this kind-namely, legal positivism'-as presented by G.H. von Wright in Norm and Action.2 Statements to the effect that a certain law exists are also generally considered to obey the laws of deontic logic. This is also von Wright's view. The combination of these two views creates problems. These become particularly conspicuous with regard to (...) a possible defect in laws-namely, inconsistency.3 They will be discussed in Sections 2-2i of this essay. With regard to certain logical or moral defects in laws, philosophers tend to claim, as truths a priori, that laws cannot have them. With regard to some other defects (for example, excessive complexity) no similar tendency is evident. A discussion of this difference is contained in Sections 22-25 of this essay. (shrink)
Le Grand's introduction to philosophy, written for use in Cambridge, was the first to be written along Cartesian lines. A section on moral philosophy, first included in the second edition 1672, drew on the common Aristotelian-style way of dealing with the subject-matter, but with modifications inspired by Descartes. In the third edition 1675 this section was almost doubled in size. The additional chapters are an unacknowledged paraphrase of the bulk of Pufendorf's De officio hominis et civis 1673. Le Grand's revision (...) can be taken as a point of transition from an older moral philosophy to modern moral philosophy. It is argued that the contrast between them is not one of virtues vs rules. Rather, the important difference is that the older is essentially eudaimonistic, both in its Aristotelian and Cartesian varieties, but the modern one is not. It relegates the quest for happiness to other disciplines such as psychology, and imports concepts which had belonged to moral theology, such as conscience, imputation, obligation, etc. into moral philosophy. Le Grands für den Gebrauch in Cambridge geschriebene "Einführung in die Philosophie" ist die erste, die nach kartesianischen Richtlinien verfaßt wird. Der Abschnitt über Moralphilosophie, der in die zweite Auflage von 1672 eingefügt wird, ist zwar immer noch in dem gebräuchlichen aristotelischen Stil geschrieben, enthält aber Modifikationen, die von Descartes inspiriert sind. In der dritten Auflage von 1675 wird der Umfang dieses Abschnitts nahezu verdoppelt. Die neu hinzugekommenen Kapitel sind eine Wiedergabe des Hauptteils von Pufendorfs "De officio hominis et civis" von 1673, die als Wiedergabe jedoch nicht kenntlich gemacht wird. Man kann Le Grands Bearbeitung als einen Schritt auf dem Weg von der alten zur modernen Moralphilosophie ansehen. Der Unterschied zwischen beiden ist nicht der Unterschied zwischen der Lehre von den moralischen Tugenden und der von den moralischen Gesetzen. Der entscheidende Unterschied ist vielmehr, daß die ältere Moralphilosophie, sowohl in ihrer aristotelischen, als auch in ihrer kartesianischen Variante, im wesentlichen eudämonistisch ist, während das auf die moderne Moralphilosophie gerade nicht zutrifft. Dadurch wird die Suche nach dem Glück an andere Disziplinen, beispielsweise die Psychologie, verwiesen, während die Moralphilosophie Konzepte wie "Gewissen", "Zurechnung", "Verbindlichkeit" übernimmt, die von der Moraltheologie entwickelt worden waren. (shrink)
The book reviewed is contains Hägerström's account of his own philosophical outlook and some of his writings on religion, translated into English by Robert T. Sandin, together with a biographical sketch by C.D. Broad.
What is commonly called a right has since about 1980 increasingly come to be called a subjective right. In this paper the origin and rise of this solecism is investigated. Its use can result in a lack of clarity and even confusion. Some aspects of rights-concepts and their history are also discussed. A brief postscript introduces Leibniz's Razor.
Francis Hutcheson was the first major philosopher of the Scottish Enlightenment, and one of the great thinkers in the history of British moral philosophy. He firmly rejected the reductionist view, common then as now, that morality is nothing more than the prudent pursuit of self-interest, arguing in favour of a theory of a moral sense. The two texts presented here are the most eloquent expressions of this theory. The Reflections on our Common Systems of Morality insists on the connection between (...) moral philosophy and moral improvement, and was a preview of his first major work, the Inquiry of 1725. The lecture On the Social Nature of Man, arguing against the psychological egoism of Hobbes, appears here in an English translation for the first time. Thomas Mautner's introduction and editorial apparatus provide a mass of new information, helping to give the reader a sense of the intellectual climate in which Hutcheson lived. (shrink)
This chapter, which analyzes the conception of natural laws and natural rights in Great Britain during the seventeenth century, suggests that the widely held belief that rights depend for their existence on being granted by law is not true, and that the opposite is arguably closer to the truth. It also explores the writings on politics and religion during this period that mentioned natural laws and rights.
Heidegger’s treatment of self-sacrifice has suffered neglect. In this paper, it is critically analysed and found wanting, and it is argued that for a proper understanding its historical location must be taken into account. The way he treats self-sacrifice presents a particular instance of many recurrent features in his thinking. Some of these can be better understood by reference to the kinship with certain forms of religious thought. In particular, the absence of a moral dimension has a counterpart in certain (...) familiar forms of religiosity. (shrink)
A discussion of a view proposed by Anthony Kenny, that inferences from factual statements to evaluative or normative statements, are in fact as unproblematic as the commonly accepted inferences inferences in the reverse direction,i. i. i from evaluative or normative statements to factual ones, The paper draws attention to some difficulties inherent in Kenny's view.