Essence and foundation of law in Javier Hervada's thought


  • Pedro Serna Universidade da Coruña (España)



concept of law, natural law, person and law, Javier Hervada, human dignity


This paper describes and critically analyses the process of formation of J. Hervada’s thought on the essence and ground of law. Hervada’s work constitutes, from its beginnings as a canonist, an endeavour to determine the nature of the juridical and, in connection with it, to deal with the question of the radical foundations of law in the condition of a person proper to the human being and in its dignity. This perspective allows to confront in a satisfactory way some nuclear questions of the theory and philosophy of law that continue to be controversial to the present days: the relationship between justice and law or, more broadly, between law and morality, the question of natural law and its insertion in the legal system, the critique of legal positivism, etc.