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Philosophy of Private Law$
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William Lucy

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780198700685

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198700685.001.0001

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Responsibility II: Alternate Possibilities

Responsibility II: Alternate Possibilities

(p.110) 4 Responsibility II: Alternate Possibilities
Philosophy of Private Law


Oxford University Press

This chapter discusses the alternate possibilities requirement. It begins by clarifying exactly what the principle of alternate possibilities might entail, offering two principal interpretations of how it can be understood, and arguing that only one of these interpretations is ultimately defensible. This allows a defence of that (‘sophisticated’) interpretation against some ostensibly powerful arguments. This is combined with additional commentary upon the alternative (‘simple’) interpretation. The two interpretations of the principle of alternate possibilities are then put to work upon two segments of legal doctrine to demonstrate the superiority of one over the other.

Keywords:   alternative possibilities requirement, private law, interpretation, legal doctrine, sophisticated interpretation, simple interpretation

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