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General Theory of Norms$
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Hans Kelsen

Print publication date: 1991

Print ISBN-13: 9780198252177

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198252177.001.0001

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The Truth of a Statement and the Validity of a Norm

The Truth of a Statement and the Validity of a Norm

(p.170) 44 The Truth of a Statement and the Validity of a Norm
General Theory of Norms

Hans Kelsen

Oxford University Press

A statement must be made, not in order to be true, but in order that we be able to judge it true or false. It is true, even if it is not made. That heat causes a metal to expand is true, even if no one makes this statement. That murder is to be punished by death is valid only if this norm is posited by the legislator. A statement is true if what it states exists. Even a false statement is a statement. If the decision of a judge ‘X is to be imprisoned’ is not valid for some reason or other, then the decision is ‘void’ (i.e. it is not a norm); this meaning does not exist.

Keywords:   statement, norm validity, Ought, derogation, judgment, norm positing

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