In search of the ontological structure of law

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The central task of jurisprudence is explaining the ontology of law or, as it is commonly said, its nature. The aim of this paper is to outline a methodology for carrying out inquiries into the nature of law. I argue that enquiries of this kind ought to begin with a pre-reflective understanding of law as an entity grounded in a social practice, that they should attempt to provide reductive necessary and sufficient conditions for the existence of law, and that success in this enterprise depends on conceptual analysis although it also requires a theory construction aiming at achieving a reflective equilibrium.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)59-76
Number of pages18
JournalAnalisi e Diritto
Publication statusPublished - 2012


  • Methodology of Jurisprudence
  • Conceptual Analysis
  • Reflective Equilibrium
  • Legal Ontology
  • Nature of Law


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