<utilitarianism, ethics, philosophy of Law, Bentham>, <legal positivism, moral philosophy> British legal theorist (1790-1859). Although he shared many of the utilitarian goals of his friend Bentham, Austin became the foremost representative of legal positivism. He argued in The Province of Jurisprudence Determined (1832) and the unfinished Lectures on Jurisprudence (1863) that, as a matter of practical fact, the law is nothing more than the command of a legitimate sovereign, enforced by the imposition of effective moral sanctions. Recommended Reading: Wilfrid E. Rumble, The Thought of John Austin: Jurisprudence, Colonial Reform, and the British Constitution (Athlone, 1985).
[A Dictionary of Philosophical Terms and Names]
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