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Review article - medieval rights and powers:on a recent interpretation

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This paper discusses a recent book of Maximiliane Kriechbaum, ‘Actio, ius, und dominium in den Rechtslehre des 13-14 Jahrhunderts.’ Kriechbaum maintains, contrary to the generally accepted opinion, that William of Ockham did not present any doctrine of individual subjective rights when he defined the word ius (right) as potestas (power).She maintains that Ockham was rather arguing in terms of Aristotelian act and potency. The review-article criticizes this view and argues that Ockham often did use the word ius to mean a rightful power, as the term is commonly used in discourse on rights.

Keywords: Aristotelian act; Aristotelian potency; Maximiliane Kriechbaum; William of Ockham; discourse on rights; individual subjective rights; ius; potestas; power; right; rightful power

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Dept. of History, Cornell University, 450 McGraw Hall, Ithaca, NY 14853-4601, USA.

Publication date: 2000-02-01

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