What does Antinomy Mean?

Antinomy means contradiction, real or apparent opposition between two laws, principles, ideas, words, phenomena, etc. The word antinomy is of Greek origin “antinomy” , formed by the prefix “anti-“ which means “against” , “nomos” that expresses “laws” , and the suffix “-ia” which means “quality”.

The legal or legal antinomy is observed by the contradiction of two laws, and this occurs when two legal norms impute the same legal assumption, achieving the same scope of applicability, and representing a problem of efficiency and legal certainty in the legal system of that country.

In the case of a jurist being in the situation of an antinomy, the rules or principles that must be applied to resolve said contradiction are:

  • Lex superior, two contradictory norms of various hierarchies must prevail the superior.
  • Lex later, the later law prevails over the promulgated previously.
  • Lex specialis, as the name implies, a specific law predominates with respect to a general rule.

It is noteworthy that in the Mexican Legal System the procedure to solve the antinomy is through an Amparo Trial.

For its part, the constitutional antinomy is a contradiction between the norms that are part of the Constitution of a country.

The antinomies can be total-total, that is, both bodies of the two norms present contradiction; total – partial, the complete body of a norm presents incompatibility with a part of the other norm, and finally, partial – partial, it is characterized because both norms present discordance in a part of its context.

The antinomy is classified as a kind of paradox, being seen as synonyms, because both present contradiction between ideas. The paradox is characterized by using expressions that contain a contradiction, for example: it is a paradox that is so heated and always goes to the beach.

The synonyms of antinomy are antithesis, contrast, contradiction, incompatibility, discordance.

Antinomy in philosophy

For Kantian philosophy, antinomy means the conflict between the laws of pure reason, the contradictions to which it is exposed when it tries to solve the four fundamental problems of rational cosmology: is the world limited in its space and time? Is the world divisible into simple parts or is it infinitely divisible? Am I free in my actions or, like other beings, are they driven by destiny? Finally, is there a supreme thing in the world or the things of nature and the order of those things are the last object where our inquiries should end?

The foregoing are the four questions, whose pro and against can be supported by arguments of equal strength, which constitutes the four antinomies of pure reason. Each antinomy is composed of thesis and antithesis, being the first two mathematical antinomies, and the other two dynamics.