Skip to navigation – Site map

Naturalism and the legal image of man

Łukasz Kurek
p. 37-58

Abstract

The first goal of this paper is to argue that the main reason why the naturalistic perspective on law does not gain traction in the literature is the prevailing legal image of man. According to this image, which has its roots in folk psychology, persons have the capacity to be authentically rational, i.e., they are able to recognize and to follow rules of rationality. The legal image of man is a powerful conceptual tool, used by legal theorists and practitioners to make sense of human behaviour in the legal context. However, I argue in this paper that this image seems to be in conflict with its scientific counterpart. The second goal of the chapter is to assess three stances toward the relation between the legal and the scientific images of man: revisionism, autonomy and integrationism.

Top of page

Excerpt

In open access from November 2018.

Outline

1 Introduction
2 Law and folk psychology
3 The legal image of man from the scientific perspective
4 Revisionism
5 Autonomy
6 Integrationism
7 Conclusion

First lines

1 Introduction

Naturalism is a famously ambiguous doctrine. In this paper, naturalism will be understood as a doctrine proclaiming that philosophical questions are questions about the world – broadly understood world. Therefore, philosophical methods of inquiry should be held to the same standard as other methods of inquiry about the world. The standard in question is evidential because all claims about the world can be evaluated on the basis of their evidential support. For most naturalists, science provides the best evidence, as compared, for instance, to common sense.

In the last few decades, naturalism has swept over many branches of philosophy. Curiously, however, legal philosophy remains somewhat resistant. Some leading philosophers of law explicitly reject naturalism. Many others keep their distance. The first goal of this paper is to argue that the main reason why the naturalistic perspective on law does not gain traction in the literature is the prevailing legal image of man....

Top of page

References

Bibliographical reference

Łukasz Kurek, « Naturalism and the legal image of man », Revus, 32 | 2017, 37-58.

Electronic reference

Łukasz Kurek, « Naturalism and the legal image of man », Revus [Online], 32 | 2017, Online since 01 November 2018, connection on 22 May 2018. URL : http://journals.openedition.org/revus/3871 ; DOI : 10.4000/revus.3871

Top of page

About the author

Łukasz Kurek

Department of Philosophy of Law and Legal Ethics, Jagiellonian University (Poland)

Email: l.kurek@uj.edu.pl

Top of page

Copyright

All rights reserved

Top of page
  • OpenEdition Journals