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Vol 21 No 9 Sept/Oct 2016

Book of the Month

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Goode on Commercial Law

Edited by: Ewan McKendrick
Price: £170.00

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A Historical Introduction to the Law of Obligations

ISBN13: 9780198764113
ISBN: 0198764111
Published: April 2001
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Country of Publication: UK
Format: Paperback
Price: £38.99
Hardback edition , ISBN13 9780198764120

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The English law of obligations has developed over most of the last millennium without any major discontinuity. Through this period each generation has built on the law of its predecessors, manipulating it so as to avoid its more inconvenient consequences and adapting it piecemeal to social and economic changes.

Sometimes fragments borrowed from other jurisdictions have been incorporated into the fabric of English law; from time to time ideas developed elsewhere have, at least temporarily, imposed a measure of structure on a common law otherwise messy and inherently resistant to any stable ordering.

In this book David Ibbetson exposes the historical layers beneath the modern rules and principles of contract, tort, and unjust enrichment. Small-scale changes caused by lawyers successfully exploiting procedural advantages in their clients' interest are juxtaposed alongside changes caused by friction along the boundaries of these principal legal categories; fossilized remnants of old doctrines jostle with newer ideas in a state of half-consistent tension; loose-knit rules of equity developed in the Chancery infiltrate themselves into more tightly controlled Common law structures.

Contract Law, Legal History
Prologue: The Prehistory of the English Law of Obligations.
I Form and Substance in Medieveal Law.
1: Structural Foundations.
2: Unity and Fragmentation of the Mediaeval Law of Contract.
3: Trespass, Trespass on the Case, and the Mediaeval Law of Tort.
4: The Substantive Law of Torts.
5: The Substantive Law of Contract.
2 The Triumph of Trespass on the Case.
6: Tort, Property, and Reputation: the Expansion of the Action on the Case.
7: The Rise of the Action of Assumpsit.
3 The Modern Law of Tort and Contract.
8: Trespass, Case, and the Moral Basis of Liability.
9: The Law of Torts in the Nineteenth Century: The Rise of the Tort of Negligence.
10: The Law of Torts in the Twentieth Century: Expansion and Collapse of the Tort of Negligence.
11: Foundations of the Modern Law of Contract.
12: The Rise of the Will Theory.
13: The Decline of the Will Theory: Legal Regulation and Contractual Fairness.
4 Unjust Enrichment.
14: Unjust Enrichment.
15: Legal Change and Legal Continuity