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After Public Law$
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Cormac Mac Amhlaigh, Claudio Michelon, and Neil Walker

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199669318

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199669318.001.0001

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Private and Public: Some Banalities About a Platitude

Private and Public: Some Banalities About a Platitude

(p.56) 4 Private and Public: Some Banalities About a Platitude
After Public Law

William Lucy

Oxford University Press

This chapter examines the meaning of public law in and through its contrast with private law. It argues that there is no single, comprehensive, compelling, or doctrinally dispositive way to distinguish public and private juridical domains, just as there is no such clean distinction between public and private as general terms of reference. However, this fact does not render the distinction meaningless or without use. Rather, the many distinctions between public and private law map onto a series of more specific and sometimes cross-cutting oppositions to do with different types of actions, goods, interests, and institutional locations, and all such distinctions remain significant within legal theory and practice.

Keywords:   public/private divide, theory of private law, theory of public law, domain of public law, domain of private law

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