By Nicola Lacey

H.L.A. Hart was once the pre-eminent criminal thinker of the 20th century. As a pupil he single-handedly reinvented the philosophy of legislation and revolutionized our realizing of legislations as a social establishment. Hart's method of felony philosophy used to be without delay disarmingly basic and breathtakingly formidable, combining the insights of the Utilitarian culture and the hot linguistic philosophy of J.L. Austin and Ludwig Wittgenstein. He sought to explain an idea of legislation that may be of relevance to all types of legislation, at any place or at any time when they arose.

This e-book is either an highbrow and a mental biography, following his lifestyles from modest origins because the son of Jewish tailor mom and dad in Yorkshire to all over the world repute because the such a lot influential English-speaking criminal theorist of the post-War period. It strains his successive metamorphoses; from Yorkshire schoolboy to Oxford student, winning barrister, intelligence officer, thinker, and, eventually, Professor of Jurisprudence at Oxford.

Nicola Lacey attracts upon Hart's formerly unpublished diaries and letters to bare a posh inside lifestyles. Outwardly winning, Hart used to be in reality affected by doubts approximately his highbrow talents, his sexual identification and his skill to shape shut relationships. Her biography additionally sheds attention-grabbing mild at the origins of his principles, and assesses his total contribution to the philosophy of legislation. notably, it's a chronicle of a lifestyles which made an impression a ways more than many folks realize.

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From their very different points of view, all these people made thoughtful and detailed comments which enormously improved the final version, somehow managing to combine intellectual and editorial criticism with exceptionally generous encouragement. I am deeply grateful to them all. My agents, Ros Edwards and Helenka Fuglewicz, have also been a fund of inspiration and support, gently but firmly pushing me to write in more accessible style than comes naturally to an academic, and giving me confidence that the effort was worthwhile.

Henry Hardy was enormously generous in providing and discussing relevant materials from the Isaiah Berlin archive, and in checking my citations with meticulous care; Professor Tony Honoré provided unstinting support and important material on jurisprudence teaching at Oxford in the 1950s; Professor Hermione Lee gave me invaluable advice about writing biography as well as much-appreciated encouragement; Professor Brian Simpson patiently answered dozens of email queries and provided me with a large amount of useful material, including many papers relating to Abraham Harari; Professor David Sugarman generously gave me access to an unpublished interview with Herbert Hart in 1988; Professor Robert Summers sent me extracts from his personal diaries containing vivid descriptions of conversations with Herbert Hart; Professor Stanley Paulson gave me important bibliographic assistance and invaluable advice about Hans Kelsen; Professor John Hall generously sent to me two letters from Ernest Gellner to Herbert Hart which he had come across in the course of his work on Gellner’s biography, as well as making time for a helpful discussion; Professor Frances Olsen tracked down Herbert Hart’s annotated copy of Weber’s writings on law and economy in the Hebrew University Library; Miriam Schatz-Sharon of the Hebrew University Library gave me endless help in tracing the complete list of the Hart bequest through the complexities of the electronic catalogue; Dr.

Finally, my warmest thanks go to David Soskice for his enthusiasm for this project, for his confidence in my ability to carry it through, and for his perceptive comments on a draft. It is no exaggeration to say that this book would not have been conceived, let alone written, without his support, advice, encouragement, and companionship. xv) List of Illustrations (between pages 202 and 203) 1. Herbert as a small child 2. From left to right: Herbert and his two brothers, Reggie and Albert 3. From left to right: Reggie, Sybil, Albert, and Herbert 4.

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