•  77
    Identification, Meaning, and the Normativity of Social Roles
    European Journal of Philosophy 19 (1): 107-128. 2011.
    Abstract: We are all familiar with the way in which social roles, such as mother, father, professor, club football coach, citizen, and so on, confront us with clusters of duties that purport to bind us. Though we generally experience these role-duties as normatively binding, we might question this. What reason do role-occupants have for conforming to the duties that define their roles? I argue that the agent who identifies with her role thereby has a weighty and important justificatory reason fo…Read more
  •  73
  •  60
    On Content-Independent Reasons: It’s Not in the Name
    Law and Philosophy 28 (3). 2009.
    Argues that content-independent reasons are intentions. Relies on Grice's distinction between natural and non-natural meaning. Rejects previous accounts, and argues that his account can understand the force of such reasons appropriately, through the conept of enabling-conditions. Illustrates through several paridigmatic types of content-independent reasons.
  •  60
    The Underlying Value of MacCormick's Post-Positivism
    Jurisprudence 1 (1): 121-136. 2010.
    In a quartet of books, Neil MacCormick develops in great detail his institutional theory of law. According to this theory, law is an institutional normative order. As we shall see, save for one key difference, MacCormick's institutional theory of a legal system closely parallels Hart's positivist theory. Though his theory of a legal system looks very much like Hart's positivist theory, he concludes that a central positivist tenet is false. He argues that, contra positivism, moral considerations …Read more
  •  13
    Per the standard reading of his view, Hart held that the legally valid norms of any legal system are those identified as such by the criteria of validity effectively accepted in common by the system's officials. Here, I focus on the presupposition underlying this Hartian account of legal facts – namely, that the officials of any legal system share a perspective that fixes the identity of their system's legally valid norms. Below, I hope to establish the appeal of this presupposition and the atte…Read more
  •  11
    The Ineliminability of Hartian Social Rules
    Oxford Journal of Legal Studies 31 (3): 603-623. 2011.
    On Shapiro’s view, any viable legal theory must successfully respond to his Possibility Puzzle and Humean Challenge. Moreover, he argues that Hartian legal theory fails in this respect. Here, I take issue with his characterization of these challenges and the Hartian response to them. I argue that he equivocates with respect to a number of the key terms and relations that inform his Possibility Puzzle, and I argue that if we disambiguate its terms consistently and plausibly, we will see that its …Read more
  •  8
    Review of Steven Hetcher, Norms in a Wired World (review)
    Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 2005 (10). 2005.
  • The Nature of Law: Contemporary Perspectives
    with Wilfrid J. Waluchow
    Oxford University Press. 2013.