All civilized societies share a common desire for internal order and security. For this reason, among others, moral codes and legal structures are developed to give form to social belief systems, to regulate interpersonal relations, and to promulgate ideals of appropriate behavior. But what should society or individuals do when the compelling dictates of personal conscience conflict strongly with statutory law? Can the morality of some be visited upon the rest of society by giving it the authority and power of law? Are there principles that go beyond legal jurisdiction to justify acts of civil disobedience? Is it right to violate the laws of society when they are opposed to personal moral convictions?
Few questions have had a more compelling effect on the history and future of the human community. For this reason the editors have brought together a fascinating collection of essays by some of the most astute minds in law and philosophy to grapple with the tough issues facing Morality and the Law.
Contributors include Hugo A. Bedau, Charles L. Black, Jr., Patrick Devlin, Joel Feinberg, Erich Fromm, H.L.A. Hart, Leon Jaworski, John Rawls, Peter Singer, and Rudolph Weingartner.