Advertisement

Sources, Recognition and the Unity of the Legal System

  • José de Sousa e BritoEmail author
Article
  • 10 Downloads

Abstract

A critical analysis of Kelsen’s theory leads to a broad concept of custom, which covers diverse types of customary norms, where the always required conviction of legal bindingness depends on different types of factual and normative reasons. In it we should include a strict concept of custom or legal usage, derogating custom, custom of general international law, custom that establishes an unwritten constitution, custom that establishes a new written constitution, judicial custom which creates a rule of precedent and custom newly expressed in the judicial application of customary rules. The basic norm could be formulated as a constitutive norm: ‘If the norms created through the first historical constitution are effective, then the first historical constitution (and all the norms derived from it) are valid.’ It is thus a customary constitutive rule that recognizes the first historical constitution as valid law. Norms which establish sources of law are constitutive rules, they can be customary norms or legislated norms, but if they are legislated, they have their validity recognized by, directly or indirectly, a constitutive customary norm. By using a broad concept of custom as a conventional practice, Hart implies that general recognition of a customary rule, together with the practice that accompanies it, are sufficient conditions of validity. A doctrine of recognition that is arrived at by means of criticism and a rational reconstruction of the doctrines of Kelsen and Hart regains the essential theses of the traditional recognition theory of Bierling and Engisch.

Keywords

Sources of law Recognition Legal system Kelsen’s basic norm Hart’s rule of recognition 

Notes

Acknowledgements

I wish to express my gratitude to Raquel Barradas de Freitas for her comments and for revising my English.

References

  1. 1.
    Austin, John L. 1975. How to Do Things with Words. 2nd ed. Oxford: Clarendon.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Bierling, Ernst Rudolf. 1961. Juristische Prinzipienlehre, I (1894). Tübingen: Mohr.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Blackstone, William. 1900. Commentaries on the Laws of England, 1785, Book I, Introduction, Section 3. Philadelphia: W. D. Lewis.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Brito, José de Sousa e. 2012. Public Reason Between Ethics and Law. International Journal for the Semiotics of Law 25 (4): 465–472.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Dahm, Georg. 1961. Völkerrecht, III. Stuttgart: Kohlhammer.Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Dworkin, Ronald. 1986. Law’s Empire. London: Fontana.Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Engisch, Karl. 1971. Auf der Suche der Gerechtigkeit. Hauptprobleme der Rechtsphilosophie. München: Piper.Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Goldschmidt, James. 1905. Materielles Justizrecht. Rechtsschutzanspruch und Strafrecht, Festgabe für Hübler. Berlin: F. Vehlen.Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Goldschmidt, James. 1925. Der Prozeß als Rechtslage. Berlin: Springer.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Goldschmidt, James. 1930. Normativer Schuldbegriff, Festgabe für Reinhard von Frank, I. Tübingen: Mohr.Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Grice, Paul. 1989. Studies in the Way of Words. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    Hart, H.L.A. 1961. The Concept of Law. 2nd ed. Oxford: Clarendon.Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Hart, H.L.A. 1983. Kelsen’s Doctrine of the Unity of Law (1968). In Essays in Jurisprudence and Philosophy, ed. H.L.A. Hart. Oxford: Clarendon.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Kelsen, Hans. 1923. Hauptprobleme der Staatsrechtslehre. 2nd ed. Tübingen: Mohr.Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Kelsen, Hans. 1952. Principles of International Law. New York: Ryenart.Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    Kelsen, Hans. 1960. Reine Rechtslehre. 2nd ed. Wien: Manz.Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Kelsen, Hans. 1962. Derogation. In Essays in Jurisprudence in Honour of Roscoe Pound, ed. Ralph A. Newman. Indianapolis: Bobbs Merrill.Google Scholar
  18. 18.
    Kelsen, Hans. 1979. Allgemeine Theorie der Normen. Wien: Manz.Google Scholar
  19. 19.
    Kelsen, Hans. 1967. Pure Theory of Law (trans: Knight, Max). Berkeley: University of California Press.Google Scholar
  20. 20.
    Kelsen, Hans. 1991. General Theory of Norms (trans: Hartney, Michael). Oxford: Clarendon.Google Scholar
  21. 21.
    Lewis, David. 1968. Convention: A Philosophical Study. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  22. 22.
    Marmor, Andrei. 2009. Social Conventions. Princeton: Princeton University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. 23.
    Marmor, Andrei. 2011. Philosophy of Law. Princeton: Princeton University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. 24.
    Romano, Santi. 1977. L’ordinamento giuridico. 1st ed. 1918, 2nd ed. 1945. Firenze: Sansoni.Google Scholar
  25. 25.
    Schmidt, Eberhard. 1964. Lehrkommentar zur Strafprozeßordnung und zum Gerichtsverfassungsgesetz, I. 2nd ed. Göttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht.Google Scholar
  26. 26.
    Schreiber, Hans-Ludwig. 1966. Der Begriff der Rechtspflicht. Berlin: de Gruyter.Google Scholar
  27. 27.
    Searle, John S. 2009. Making the Social World. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  28. 28.
    von Savigny, Friedrich Carl. 1840. System des heutigen Römischen Rechts, I. Berlin: Gale.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. 29.
    Waldron, Jeremy. 2009. Who Needs Rules of Recognition? In The Rule of Recognition and the U. S. Constitution, ed. Matthew D. Adler and Kenneth Einar Himma. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  30. 30.
    Welcker, Karl Theodor. 1964. Die letzten Gründen von Recht, Staat und Strafe (1813). Aalen: Scientia.Google Scholar
  31. 31.
    Welzel, Hans. 1966. An den Grenzen des Rechts. Die Frage nach der Rechtsgeltung.. Köln und Opladen: Westdeutscher Verlag.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. 32.
    Wengler, Wilhelm. 1964. Völkerrecht, I. Berlin: Springer.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. 33.
    Wengler, Wilhelm. 1953. Betrachtungen über den Zusammenhang der Rechtsnormen in der Rechtsordnung und die Verschiedenheit der Rechtsordnungen. In Festschrift für Rudolf Laun. Hamburg: Girardet.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Tribunal ConstitucionalLisbonPortugal

Personalised recommendations