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Jurisprudence/Law

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Hart, in chapter 4 of The Concept of Law, criticizes Austin’s thesis that the source of the laws in every independent political society is a sovereign, an individual or assembly of individuals who is the supreme legislator or legislature in the society. Specifically, Hart criticizes Austin’s thesis, first, for falsely implying that there is in every independent political society someone or some group who, being the society’s supreme legislator or legislature, is not bound by any laws and, second, for failing to fit the laws of the United States and other modern democracies. Explain and evaluate Hart’s thesis. Then discuss whether John Locke’s thesis in The Second Treatise of Government that the source of the positive laws of an independent political society is the legislature of a government whose lawmaking powers derive from consent of the people subject to that government.