Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Democracy, Agency, and the StateTheory with Comparative Intent$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Guillermo O'Donnell

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780199587612

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199587612.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2020. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 26 November 2020

The State as Law: Contributions and Ambivalences 1

The State as Law: Contributions and Ambivalences 1

(p.93) 5 The State as Law: Contributions and Ambivalences1
Democracy, Agency, and the State

Guillermo O'Donnell (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

This chapter insists and elaborates on an assertion made in preceding chapters, namely, that the legal system is an intrinsic part of the state and that, consequently, it is a mistake to conflate it with its most visible institutions — the bureaucracy. It examines conceptions of the rule of law (or estado de derecho), with attention to the characteristics that should approximate an authentically democratic rule of law. Yet after highlighting the contributions that the law makes to democracy, and to social order in general, the chapter points to one of its constitutive tensions: the unequal relations that that same law sanctions and backs in capitalist social relations and in the hierarchically ordered institutions of state and society. In addition, the chapter notes the extensive and in general poorly controlled quasi-lawmaking and adjudication that have various state bureaucracies.

Keywords:   law, legal theory, rule of law, sociology of law, legal inequality, capitalism, bureaucracy

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .