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This book, now available for the first time in paperback, attempts an analysis of the nature of promissory obligations.
The subject is one which has attracted a great deal of attention among both moral and linguistic philosophers, but the author contends that much of the philosophical literature is flawed by its unreality,and · unfamiliarity with the serious problems that arise. from the practice of promising.
As a contract lawyer, the author is able to conduct a thorough survey of the various philosophical theories, injecting intothe discussion many examples and illustrations drawn from the law. In the first part of the book the author examines theories of promising associated with the Natural Lawyers, the utilitarians, arild a number of linguistic philosophers. All these the author rejects as unsound.
In the last part of the book the author offers his own theory of promissory obligation, which closely parallels the theories of contractual obligation which the author has been developing in other works.