Introduction to Common Law

Introduction to Common Law

Can simple rules solve social coordination problems better than regulations do?  

in this series on the Common Law, Professor Richard Epstein of NYU School of Law, provides an alternative to the conventional view that property rights are arbitrarily created by the state, and therefore can be changed at will by the state.  A few simple rules, he argues, are universal principles of social organization, consistent across time and culture, which form the basis of social gains.

 

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1 of 8: Studying the Common Law [Introduction to Common Law] [No. 86]

In law school, the four major branches of the Common Law, property, contract, tort, and restitution are treated as distinct subjects with arbitrary rules. Professor Richard Epstein of NYU School of Law argues that this approach misses the mark, that ... In law school, the four major branches of the Common Law, property, contract, tort, and restitution are treated as distinct subjects with arbitrary rules. Professor Richard Epstein of NYU School of Law argues that this approach misses the mark, that there is a deep intellectual unity among these subjects.

Professor Epstein provides an alternative to the conventional view that property rights are arbitrarily created by the state, and therefore can be changed at will by the state; a few simple rules, he argues, are universal principles of social organization, consistent across time and culture, which form the basis of social gains.

Professor Epstein is the inaugural Laurence A. Tisch Professor of Law at NYU School of Law, a Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution, and Professor of Law Emeritus and a senior lecturer at the University of Chicago.

As always, the Federalist Society takes no position on particular legal or public policy issues; all expressions of opinion are those of the speaker.

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