An Analysis of Rights by Samuel Stoljar (auth.)

By Samuel Stoljar (auth.)

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Extra resources for An Analysis of Rights

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The moderate version does not deny that, typically, rights and duties are 'tightly' correlative. Where A owes B $10, the right-duty implication is both specific and determinate as A now owes what B is owed. The mutual implications here are strong, Lyons concedes, because they entail conceptual correlatives: there can be no debtor without a creditor just as there is no right side without a left. 8 But, as Lyons further contends, when we turn from such passiye to more active examples this conceptual corelativity loosens considerably; for though rights and duties still denote ordered pairs, the respective contents of these pairs are no longer so matching as before.

J3 So where Williams saw an unbridgeable cleavage between liberties and ordinary rights, Hart rushes upon the opposite mistake of constructing what he thinks appropriate bridges between them. If liberties have to be surrounded by such protective perimeters of correlative rights and duties, what is the point of having liberties as distinct from rights? For if there is to be a perimeter to provide the necessary 'ring' within which a liberty can be exercised, it is difficult to see what exactly that liberty amounts to as a separate concept.

Rights in rem are of very different character. Unlike rights in personam they are not positive or commissive but negative and omissive since their correlative duties inevitably consist of acts of forbearance or non-interference with another's person or property. Thus a right in rem to land means everyone has to respect that land by abstaining from trespassing on it, whether deliberately or carelessly. An old legal tradition regards such rights as rights against 'the world' since the person who may break this duty need not be an already identified person but can be anyone in the world capable of committing the trespass.

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