The subject matter of this chapter is described as contemporary theory for the following reasons:
Hohfeld, although writing in the early twentieth century, had significant influence on understanding and development of the character of human rights and obligations;
Hart carried forward into the modern age the legal positivism of Austin, but giving it real current relevance, for example by his work on rules and by the content and breadth of his various debates;
Dworkin is certainly contemporary, and his work has gone some way to reconcile traditional strands of jurisprudential thought;
Theories of justice discussed by Rawls and entitlement by Nozick lie at the heart of much of today’s legal philosophical debate, and call for continuing attention by modern scholars;
Law and economics cannot be ignored in the twentyfirst century, when capitalism and globalisation seem set to dictate much of what is likely to happen in the foreseeable future;
Other writers or themes could have been selected, but these give something of contemporary flavour and all continue strands of legal theory dealt with in previous chapters.