The jargon of ‘Law and Order’: from Nazism to the Trump campaign via Heidegger

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Nazi philosophy survived through Carl Schmitt and Martin Heidegger. I use Theodor Adorno’s concept ‘jargon’ to show how this philosophy was a key component in Nazi jurisprudence and Nazi law. We see similar jargon in Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign. Certain ‘critical’ responses to Nazi law perpetuate this jargon and thus (unwittingly) normalize far right positions in law and policy. If we are determined that such atrocities never happen again, we must begin at the metaphysical/ontological level. I suggest that the key flaw in Heidegger’s philosophy is that it does not place enough emphasis on human fallibility.


Original languageEnglish
Number of pages27
JournalLaw Culture and the Humanities
Early online date21 Sep 2018
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 21 Sep 2018


  • Heidegger, Adorno, Nazism, Trump, Fraser, Nazi law, Schmitt, far-right, alt-right, Bourdieu, Klemperer

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