Consider, for example, a headmaster objecting to the routing of a bypass near his school. Should he confine himself to presenting his case in the local public inquiry? Since so many considerations have to be taken into account, their combination may well make the case unique.
Raz's analytical approach is truly enlightening and helps us to argue about things more clearly.
However, one must not let clarity (via the use of conceptual rigidity) make one lose sight of palpable reality, as I felt sometimes happened throughout the book.
Only if the Service Conception does include the belief condition will it support Raz’s claim that authority is consistent with one’s rational ‘self-reliance’, that is, acting upon one’s own judgement (including, as to who has authority).
Only if the Service Conception does not include the belief condition will it support Raz’s perfectionist account of government. Open Access This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License ( which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made.
The last part of the book is devoted to some key substantive problems.
The author argues that there is no obligation to obey the law.
As a matter of interpretation, different parts of Raz’s work appear to lead in entirely opposite directions: some parts clearly support the reliable belief condition, others do not.
Regardless of Raz’s ultimate answer, however, the question reveals a broader inconsistency.
Wiley Online Library requires cookies for authentication and use of other site features; therefore, cookies must be enabled to browse the site.