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The Limits of Juristic Power from the Perspective of the Polish Sociological Tradition


Paweł Jabłoński and Przemysław Kaczmarek

The aim of the book is to outline and discuss a way of thinking about the limits of juristic power. In terms of research methodology, the authors’ approach entails relating the topography of such limits to selected theoretical frameworks developed within the Polish sociological tradition. The argument draws, above all, on the works of Leon Petrażycki, Jerzy Lande, Bronisław Wróblewski, Adam Podgórecki, Florian Znaniecki, Jacek Szmatka, and Piotr Sztompka. Striving to have each aspect shed light on the other, the authors seek out theoretical arguments which support their account of these limits. They present their model of the limits of juristic power, which includes the following constitutive factors: 1) politico-legal culture, 2) legal texts, 3) juristic culture, and 4) subjective factors (i.e. an individual, axiological sense rooted in ethical and aesthetic judgments)

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Part One The realization of the law, according to the Petrażyckian tradition


1 The ontology of law according to Leon Petrażycki

1.1 Introductory remarks

1.1.1 “The unrecognized father of the sociology of law”

Adam Pogórecki once called Leon Petrażycki the “unrecognized father of the sociology of law” (1981), and it seems that there is still a lot of truth in this description. Although for contemporary connoisseurs of Petrażycki’s Wstępu do nauki prawa i moralności [Introduction to Legal Science and Morality] its strong sociological engagement is obvious, it is fair to say that in the wider academic context Petrażycki’s ideas are still divorced from their social component. However, this aspect is very important for understanding his thought. Therefore, it will not be an unnecessary digression if this chapter starts with a few words of explanation as to why we place Petrażycki among the representatives of sociology (broadly understood).

The first argument, which is actually decisive, involves pointing out the extensive presence of strictly sociological themes in the Petrażycki’s works. That such aspects are common and consistent in his works is emphasized by Maria Borucka-Arctowa (1974: 8), and Andrzej Kojder, who calls Petrażycki “a classic figure in the sociology of law” (2016: 232), and in his preface for the selected of works of Petrażycki, Kojder notes the regular presence of sociological motifs (1985: XIX; see also: Woźniak 2013: 42; Frieske 1975: 126–132). Another eminent expert on Petrażycki’s oeuvre, Andrzej Walicki,...

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