Can you identify the context of this passage?
To have a persona [to be a person] was to have a face before the law—which is to say, to be recognized as one possessing rights and privileges before a court, or as being able to give testimony upon the strength of one’s own word, or simply as owning a respectable social identity. For [your turn–fill in the blanks here], legal personality did not exist, or existed in only the most tenuous of forms…. [Fill in the blank again] was [someone]… “not having a persona,” or even, “not having a face.” Before the law, he or she was not a person in the fullest and most proper sense.
Of whom might this author might be speaking? Does this represent an injustice? If so, on what basis, and what could be (or might have been, if this was in the past) be done about it? I’ll let you know later today or tomorrow.