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The Transformation of American Law, 1780-1860 (Studies in Legal History) ePub download

by Morton J. Horwitz

  • Author: Morton J. Horwitz
  • ISBN: 0674903706
  • ISBN13: 978-0674903708
  • ePub: 1726 kb | FB2: 1564 kb
  • Language: English
  • Category: Physics
  • Publisher: Harvard University Press; First Edition edition (January 1, 1976)
  • Pages: 384
  • Rating: 4.1/5
  • Votes: 918
  • Format: azw lit mbr docx
The Transformation of American Law, 1780-1860 (Studies in Legal History) ePub download

Awarded the Bancroft Prize in American History in 1978, Morton J. Horwitz's The Transformation of American Law, 1780-1860 is considered one of the most significant works ever published in American legal history

Awarded the Bancroft Prize in American History in 1978, Morton J. Horwitz's The Transformation of American Law, 1780-1860 is considered one of the most significant works ever published in American legal history. Since its publication in 1977, it has become the standard source on early nineteenth-century American law. In this monumental book, Morton J. Horwitz offers a sweeping overview of the emergence of our national (and modern) legal system from English and colonial antecedents

Awarded the Bancroft Prize in American History in 1978, Morton J. Horwitz offers a Awarded the Bancroft Prize in American History in 1978, Morton J.

He treats the evolution of the common law as intellectual history and also demonstrates how the shifting views of private law became a dynamic element in the economic growth of the United States.

Morton J. HORWITZ, Morton J Horwitz . Morton J. Horwitz is a graduate of City College of New York and received a doctorate in Government and a law degree from Harvard University. Author of numerous articles in law and history, Mr. Horwitz is Professor of Law at the Harvard Law School, where he teaches legal history. Библиографические данные.

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PDF A critical appreciation of Morton Horwitz argues that at the very heart of the metamorphosis of American . of American legal history. But at the same time, Pound denied that much had substantially.

PDF A critical appreciation of Morton. J. Horwitz, The Transformation of American Law 1780-1860 (Harvard University Press, 1977). Horwitz argues that at the very heart of the metamorphosis of American law in the period. 1780-1860 was an alliance between the legal profession and mercantile and entrepreneurial. Prior to 1790 lawyers and judges chiefly served the interests of the landed and were. As to the influence of economy and society, "tenacity of a taught legal tradition, is.

Studies in Legal History. Studies in Legal History.

He treats the evolution of the common law as intellectual history and also demonstrates how the shifting views of private law became a dynamic element in the economic growth of the United States

In a remarkable book based on prodigious research, Morton J. Horwitz offers a sweeping overview of the emergence of a national (and modern) legal system from English and colonial antecedents. He treats the evolution of the common law as intellectual history and also demonstrates how the shifting views of private law became a dynamic element in the economic growth of the United States.

Horwitz's subtle and sophisticated explanation of societal change begins with the common law, which was intended to provide justice for all. The great breakpoint came after 1790 when the law was slowly transformed to favor economic growth and development. The courts spurred economic competition instead of circumscribing it. This new instrumental law flourished as the legal profession and the mercantile elite forged a mutually beneficial alliance to gain wealth and power.

The evolving law of the early republic interacted with political philosophy, Horwitz shows. The doctrine of laissez-faire, long considered the cloak for competition, is here seen as a shield for the newly rich. By the 1840s the overarching reach of the doctrine prevented further distribution of wealth and protected entrenched classes by disallowing the courts very much power to intervene in economic life.

This searching interpretation, which connects law and the courts to the real world, will engage historians in a new debate. For to view the law as an engine of vast economic transformation is to challenge in a stunning way previous interpretations of the eras of revolution and reform.

Moogugore
The five star reviews are right: "The Transformation of American Law" is an important book, filled with cliche-shattering ideas. Any law student or lawyer who kids himself that private law is apolitical or intellectually autonomous should read it immediately. He'll learn that supposedly timeless and neutral legal doctrines are actually of 19th-century vintage and had profound distributional and economic consequences. (Sneak preview: Industrial and financial interests benefited at the expense of workers and farmers.)

The three star review is also right: "The Transformation of American Law" is leaden, convoluted, tedious, repetitive, and filled with unexplained legal jargon (such as "executory contract" or "quantum meruit"). Non-legally trained readers will have a hard time following the argument.

Bottom line: I've split the difference and given the book four stars. Be warned -- but read it.
Fenius
Horwitz argues a fairly radical case, which may not have received wide enough recognition due to the subject matter and style. He says "I seek to show that one of the crucial choices made during the antebellum period was to promote economic growth primarily through the legal, not the tax, system, a choice which had major consequences for the distribution of wealth and power in American society." He also has some interesting ideas about the way "the internal technical life of a field generates autonomous forces that determine its history." We make a mistake, Horwitz believes, if we fail to account for the activities and interests of lawyers, judges, the legal profession, law schools, etc., when looking at how "the law" influenced history. The same could probably be said, with equally interesting results, for religion, medicine, or the study of history itself.

Horwitz looks at common law. Constitutional law, he says, "represents episodic legal intervention buttressed by a rhetorical tradition that is often an unreliable guide to the slower (and often more unconscious) processes of legal change in America." Constitutional law also focuses on judicial review, rather than what Horwitz characterizes as a very active, constructive, legislative role taken on by nineteenth century jurists. "By 1820," he says, "the process of common law decision making had taken on many of the qualities of legislation. As judges began to conceive of common law adjudication as a process of making and not merely discovering legal rules, they were led to frame general doctrines based on a self-conscious consideration of social and economic policies." The ancient tradition of "an eternal set of principles expressed in custom and derived from natural law" gave way to an understanding of law as "an instrument of policy" that could be used "for governing society and promoting socially desirable conduct." Once this change had been made, the game became one of defining the terms "socially desirable."

These ideas have been used to great effect by Ted Steinberg and others. For people seriously reading American History, this volume is a must-read.
Rollers from Abdun
I am neither a lawyer nor a historian, a mere 3rd rate merchant, but the book is an excellent map to where the bones of USA are buried, case by case. How come pollution became such a problem in USA? Case by case, the common law system that protected the environment was broken apart to give the advantage from the property owner to the factory owner. Once a factory owner would have to control pollution, and yes this would add to cost, but not stop progress. Court cases allowed big biz to socialize the cost of pollution while keeping the profits. Sound familiar, with today's bank bailouts?

Yes, Horwitz is a Marxist, but we err if we fail to perceive that Marxists get their facts straight. And as a Marxist, he summarizes we need Marxism. OK, just skip the last paragraph in the book. The rest is a stunning, accurate indictment of USA Big Law and Big Biz (and big govt). WE cannot reform or recover America, but we can know what works, and by self-employment carve out a redoubt of legitimate action in a lawless land.
Shistus
Laissez-Faire means live and let live. In this history by Morton Horwitz, we see that along with the rise of corporatism in America was the demise of laissez-faire through the interventionist hand of the state's judicial system:

Mill owners were allowed by government to destroy other people's property by flood;

Canals and railroads were built by seizing land through "eminent domain";

The right of juries to decide judgements for damages in tort cases was taken from them and given to judges;

Contract labor laws - "if a worker signed a contract to work for a year, and left before the year was up, he was not entitled to any wages, even for the time he had worked. But the courts at the same time said that if a building business broke a contract, it was entitled to be paid for whatever had been done up to that point".

Horwitz shows us that laissez-faire was replaced by corporatism, but he doesn't tell us that because the corporatists label their actions behind a false label, Horwitz rails against their false label rather than the actual label of corporatism that accurately describes their actions: "By the middle of the nineteenth century the legal system had been reshaped to the advantage of men of commerce and industry at the expense of farmers, workers, consumers, and other less powerful groups". Included in these other less powerful groups was the laissez-faire entrepeneur, the sole-proprietor and/or partner(s) in business who were responsible for their actions as businessmen unlike the owners of corporations who hid behind hired managers and the law that held the owners exempt. The worst fraud committed on the American people was the deeming of the corporation as an artificial person with constitutional rights.
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