Monthly Archives: April, 2017

Lee Anne Fennell, ‘Lumps and Lapses in Tort Law’

Abstract: Tort law is lumpy. It responds not to the innumerable fine-grained acts of risk creation that each of us performs every day but rather to large, discrete, harmful events – ‘accidents’. And it responds to those events in a binary way, converting unruly facts into an on/off judgment about liability. This operation, characteristic of […]

Amelia Thorpe, ‘Hegel’s Hipsters: Claiming Ownership in the Contemporary City’

Abstract: Property is both revered and reviled. Praised for its connections to autonomy, agency, power and community, property attracts scorching critiques for its implication in exclusion, inequality and injustice. This article provides a new perspective from which to examine this dual nature of property. Drawing on fieldwork in the United States, Canada, Australia and New […]

‘Is a dog a product?’

“The Abnormal Use blog is reporting on an interesting story about a lawsuit against a Humane Society pet shelter based on the fact that a dog adopted from the agency bit a 15-month old child. What is interesting is that the cause of action is based on product liability principles. The case apparently argues that […]

Larry Alexander, ‘Is There a Case for Strict Liability?’

Abstract: In this short paper, I shall answer the title’s question first in the context of criminal law and then in the context of tort law. In that latter section I shall also mention in passing contractual and other forms of civil liability that are strict, although they will not be my principal focus. My […]

John Sprankling, ‘Property Law for the Anthropocene Era’

Abstract: The most important challenge facing American property law today is how to adapt to the Anthropocene era. In 2016, scientists officially acknowledged that we have entered this new geological period, which is characterized by the reality that human activity ― not nature ― is now the dominant force transforming the physical world. In this […]

Cieplak and Leefatt, ‘“Smart Contracts”: A Smart Way to Automate Performance’

Introduction: “The freedom to contract is one of the oldest and most basic tenets of the American legal system. Subject to limited judicial and statutory exceptions, parties have been and are generally afforded carte blanche in determining the terms of a binding agreement and how those terms are memorialized. The recent emergence of “smart contracts,” […]

Katharina Schmidt, ‘Henry Maine’s “Modern Law”: From Status to Contract and Back Again?’

Abstract: In this Article, I conduct a long overdue assessment of Henry Maine’s ‘from Status to Contract’ thesis in light of two essentially modern phenomena: contract standardization and relational contracting. Drawing on comparative legal history, classical sociological and anthropological literature, contemporary contract law theory, and recent works in the field of (behavioral) law and economics, […]

Avraham and Yuracko, ‘Torts and Discrimination’

Abstract: Current tort law contains incentives to target individuals and communities based on race and gender. Surprisingly, the basis for such targeting is the seemingly neutral use of three different race- and gender-based statistical tables (for wages, life expectancy, and worklife expectancy) which, when used in tort damage calculations, result in a great disparity between […]

Vanessa Mak, ‘Who Does What in European Private Law – And How is it Done? An Experimentalist Perspective’

Abstract: The EU has made it one of its goals to promote social inclusion (Strategy 2020). This article aims to identify how, within a changing context of lawmaking and governance, European private law can contribute to reaching that goal. Conventional knowledge of the economic regulation of Western economies holds that economic and social inclusion of […]

Susan Watson, ‘The Taxonomy of the Modern Company’

Abstract: Mystery is at the core of corporate law. The first question in corporate law is also the last: what is a company? It is a question that the legal philosopher HLA Hart (1983, 23) would prefer we did not ask, but given the centrality of companies to modern life, we cannot help ourselves as […]