Philosophy Dictionary of Arguments

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State: In political philosophy, the state (polity) is a centralized political organization with authority over a defined territory and population. It enforces laws, maintains order, and exercises governance through various institutions. See also Society, Nations, Governance, Institutions, Power, Law, Laws, Rights, Jurisdiction, Legislation.
Annotation: The above characterizations of concepts are neither definitions nor exhausting presentations of problems related to them. Instead, they are intended to give a short introduction to the contributions below. – Lexicon of Arguments.

Author Concept Summary/Quotes Sources

Ernst-Wolfgang Böckenförde on State (Polity) - Dictionary of Arguments

Brocker I 773
State/Prerequisites/Böckenförde: the state must presuppose the moral judgement and the public spirit of the citizens in order to be able to act in a regulatory and liberal manner. However, he or she cannot meet these requirements using
Brocker I 774
an authoritative injunction or prohibition. However, in view of the emphasis on these prerogative and pre-political prerequisites of the state, it would be shortened to place Böckenförde in a tradition line with Carl Schmitt, with whom, however, he had a close intellectual relationship. (1)
Brocker I 775
Böckenförde understands the concept of state with Hobbes as a framework of enforcement based on law and the monopolisation of power to guarantee peace within society. With Hermann Heller he understands the state as a unit of effect and action. Böckenförde also adopts the view that the state is not merely a construct of thought and not a substance detached from people, but the epitome of a real, organized effort of coordinated social action by people who arrive at unity in this action. In the constitutional state, this socially coordinated action is legally shaped and even structured by law.(2)
Brocker I 785
For the thesis that the constitutional state cannot guarantee its own conditions, see Citizens/Böckenförde.

1. Dieter Gosewinkel, „‘Beim Staat geht es nicht allein um Macht, sondern um die staatliche Ordnung als Freiheitsordnung‘, Biographisches Interview mit Ernst.-Wolfgang Böckenförde“, in: Ernst-Wolfgang Böckenförde, Wissenschaft, Politik, Verfassungsgericht, Berlin 2011, p. 359-384
2. Ernst-Wolfgang Böckenförde, Staat – Verfassung – Demokratie. Studien zur Verfassungstheorie und zum Verfassungsrecht, Frankfurt/M. 1992 (zuerst 1991), p. 11

Tine Stein, „Ernst-Wolfgang Böckenförde, Staat – Verfassung- Demokratie“, in: Manfred Brocker (Hg.) Geschichte des politischen Denkens. Das 20. Jahrhundert. Frankfurt/M. 2018

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. Translations: Dictionary of Arguments
The note [Concept/Author], [Author1]Vs[Author2] or [Author]Vs[term] resp. "problem:"/"solution:", "old:"/"new:" and "thesis:" is an addition from the Dictionary of Arguments. If a German edition is specified, the page numbers refer to this edition.

Böckenf I
Ernst-Wolfgang Böckenförde
State, Society and Liberty: Studies in Political Theory and Constitutional Law, London 1991
German Edition:
Staat, Gesellschaft, Freiheit. Studien zur Staatstheorie und zum Verfassungsrecht Frankfurt 1976

Brocker I
Manfred Brocker
Geschichte des politischen Denkens. Das 20. Jahrhundert Frankfurt/M. 2018

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Ed. Martin Schulz, access date 2024-03-05
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