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A Jurisprudence from the Perspective of the "Political Superior," 23 Northern Kentucky Law Review 605 (1996)


The perspective of the low man on the totem pole has become the major focus for Anglo-American legal study and conceptualization. Law, in this conception, is a body of rules, the particularized expressions of the command of the legal superior. While the person issuing the command is certainly making a choice in identifying and selecting a particular practicable option, the content of that choice, the command, is beyond the appraisal of the subordinate who receives it. From the perspective of the political inferior, law does not allow for choice; it is merely the result of the commands of the political superior, a body of rules to which the inferior is subordinated. The function of the subordinate is to comply personally or, where appropriate, to implement the command. The function of jurisprudence is to instruct on when and how to comply.

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