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Vol 23 No 3 March/April 2018

Book of the Month

Cover of Scamell and Gasztowicz on Land Covenants

Scamell and Gasztowicz on Land Covenants

Price: £225.00

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Liberalizing Contracts: Nineteenth Century Promises Through Literature, Law and History

ISBN13: 9781138923706
Published: August 2017
Publisher: Routledge
Country of Publication: UK
Format: Hardback
Price: £95.00

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Contract reached its highpoint as a conceptual tool in the Victorian era, when historical frameworks, from feudalism to religion, lost their power to delineate social relations.

As Victorians negotiated the unsettled balances of their sense of constraints and possibilities in this era of change, and experimented with conceptual forms able to make sense of a rapidly evolving market society, representations of contract, and promise – the human relation at contract’s heart – assumed center-stage.

Reading representations of promissory relations in canonic realist fiction – one of the main sites of liberal social thought of the Victorian era – against histories of contract law and practice, this book revisits and reframes prevailing liberal views of contract.

Contract Law, Legal History

Part 1: A Suspect Consensus
1. Contract’s Liberalism, or How the History of Contract Has Formed the Authoritative Sense of the Past Supplement. How Law & Literature Has Failed to Challenge the Consensus

Part 2: Liberalism and Promises
2. Signifying Social Existence
3. The Individualism of Relations
4. Relational Individuals in a Single Arena Supplement. Promise Keeping?

Part 3: The Liberal Outlook: Liberal Ideals and Their Conceptual Others
5. Liberalism: Reinterpreting Statuses
6. Liberal Anguish: The Psychic Conclusion