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Hegel's LawsThe Legitimacy of a Modern Legal Order$
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William E. Conklin

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780804750301

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9780804750301.001.0001

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The Ethicality of an Ethos

The Ethicality of an Ethos

(p.162) Chapter Six The Ethicality of an Ethos
Hegel's Laws
Stanford University Press

This chapter argues that ethicality is hardly what we take today in Anglo-American legal philosophy as the morality of individual rights and duties. Rather, ethicality addresses how the individual recognizes strangers through social relationships in an ethos. Such relationships are represented by shared universals such as statutes, precedents, and customs. So too are universals manifested in religious practices, institutional practices, unwritten and unstated assumptions of a populace, and, more generally, what Hans–Georg Gadamer (1900–2002) calls prejudicia. These sources constitute an ethos. Hegel deconstructs different forms of an ethos in Western legal culture: the family, civil society, the organic constitution, and various forms of an international legal consciousness.

Keywords:   ethos, ethicality, morality, legal philosophy, social relationships, shared universals, Hans–Georg Gadamer, prejudicia, legal consciousness

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