Belgrade Legal Theory Group organized another event in the spring semester of 2024 with Prof. David Duarte (University of Lisbon), on the topic of deontic modalities.
Prof. Duarte started by presenting Hohfeld’s schema of molecular and atomic rights, with different atomic legal positions and their logical relations. He outlined Hohfeld’s square of deontic modalities and argued that the biggest problem with his conception is thinking about legal propositions as a single action in each correlativity line only assignable to one agent. Prof. Duarte then offered his view of deontic modalities as corelative co-action, claiming that a legal position always involves a negative corelative action of a secondary agent besides the main legal addressee (primary agent). Providing many examples for all the given modalities, he concluded that the deontic status of a co-action is such that the action of the secondary agent is always related to the negation of the action’s results.

Following was the Q&A part of the event, with substantial interest from the audience, which was focused on various aspects of the topic, but mostly on practical implications of the theoretical problems, as well as the concept of non-derogable human rights.

Ending the meeting, Mila Đorđević thanked everyone for an excellent discussion, as well as prof. Duarte for the interesting lecture.