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The Province of Jurisprudence Democratized$
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Allan C. Hutchinson

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780195343250

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195343250.001.0001

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The Provinciality of Jurisprudence Determined

The Provinciality of Jurisprudence Determined

(p.39) Chapter Three The Provinciality of Jurisprudence Determined
The Province of Jurisprudence Democratized

Allan C. Hutchinson

Oxford University Press

This chapter examines the nature and performance of the most favored mode of philosophical inquiry: conceptual analysis. It argues that analytical jurisprudence's practice of conceptual analysis is not neutral between different political systems of governance. Its account of law might easily capture the operation of authoritarian regimes and some industrialized modern states (e.g., the United Kingdom and the United States), but it fails to accommodate some other kinds of governmental arrangements. In particular, it does not lend itself to be applied to strongly democratic modes of governance and, on occasion, places considerable obstacles in the way of their development. Consequently, contrary to their most cherished contentions, analytical jurists must defend the partial thrust of their analytical jurisprudence in directly and substantively normative terms. Divested of its universalistic claims, analytical jurisprudence becomes exactly the kind of politicized theory that it claims to reject and from which it strives to distinguish itself.

Keywords:   conceptual analysis, legal theory, analytical jurisprudence, democracy, H. L. A. Hart, The Concept of Law

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