Dictionary of Arguments

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Author Item Summary Meta data
Habermas IV 119
Law/Durkheim/Habermas: Like Max Weber, Durkheim understands the development of law as a process of disenchantment. Archaic law is essentially criminal law, Durkheim treats civil law as an example of modern law with private property as the core institution.
Habermas IV 120
Archaic Law/Durkheim/Habermas: a violation of the sacred norm is not considered a crime because sanctions are imposed on it; rather, it triggers sanctions because the norms are initially nothing more than a device for the protection of sacred objects or districts.
Punishment: is understood here as atonement. (1)
Habermas IV 121
Modern Law/Civil Law/Durkheim/Habermas: compensation for damages takes the place of atonement; thus modern law has lost its sacred character.
Problem: the arbitrariness of private persons must be bound by something on which the intended validity of the standards is based and which binds contracting parties.
Solution/Durkheim: Durkheim attributes the origin of this generally obligatory character behind the norms to the protection of the sacred in earlier societies.
Property/Durkheim/Law: Durkheim attributes modern private property and its protection to sacred goods and their worthiness of protection. (2)(3)


1. E. Durkheim, De la division du travail social, German: Über die Teilung der sozialen Arbeit, Frankfurt, 1977, p. 141f
2. Ibid p. 176-177
3. E. Durkheim, Lecons de sociologie, Physique des moeurs et du droit. Paris 1969, engl. London 1957.


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Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution.
The note [Author1]Vs[Author2] or [Author]Vs[term] is an addition from the Dictionary of Arguments. If a German edition is specified, the page numbers refer to this edition.

Durkheim I
E. Durkheim
The Rules of Sociological Method - French: Les Règles de la Méthode Sociologique, Paris 1895
German Edition:
Die Regeln der soziologischen Methode Frankfurt/M. 1984

Ha I
J. Habermas
Der philosophische Diskurs der Moderne Frankfurt 1988

Ha III
Jürgen Habermas
Theorie des kommunikativen Handelns Bd. I Frankfurt/M. 1981

Ha IV
Jürgen Habermas
Theorie des kommunikativen Handelns Bd. II Frankfurt/M. 1981


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