The Rule of Recognition as a Constitutive Convention

Part of the Law and Philosophy Library book series (LAPS, volume 126)


In his contribution, Jorge L. Rodríguez criticizes the position that Marmor has defended in previous works. Basically the criticism is that, according to Rodríguez, it cannot be the case that a convention is constitutive, and therefore the rule of recognition cannot be of this type. According to this author, the concept of convention employed by Marmor is too weak: it leads to consider a rule as conventional even though all the members of a community follow it because they consider that it is correct, and a rule may not be considered as conventional even though everyone is following it just because others follow it. Moreover, it seems to be pointless to speak of constitutional conventions inasmuch as, according to Rodríguez, the arbitrary character of conventions is incompatible with the constitutive character of a rule. As a consequence, Marmor’s view would be affected by an internal inconsistency because, following his own definitions, the constitutive character of the rule of recognition is incompatible with its conventional character.


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Law DepartmentUniversity of Mar del PlataMar del PlataArgentina

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