13 January 2010

Mixed Jurisdictions Compared

As a Louisianan, I’m delighted to note the recent publication of Vernon Valentine Palmer and Elspeth Christie Reid (eds), Mixed jurisdictions compared: private law in Louisiana and Scotland (2009). As the Edinburgh University Press site explains:

Returning to a theme featured in some of the earlier volumes in the Edinburgh Studies in Law series, this volume offers an in-depth study of ‘mixed jurisdictions’ – legal systems which combine elements of the Anglo-American Common Law and the European Civil Law traditions. This new collection of essays compares key areas of private law in Scotland and Louisiana. In thirteen chapters, written by distinguished scholars on both sides of the Atlantic, it explores not only legal rules but also the reasons for the rules, discussing legal history, social and cultural factors, and the law in practice, in order to account for patterns of similarity and difference. Contributions are drawn from the Law Schools of Tulane University, Louisiana State University, Loyola University New Orleans, the American University Washington DC, and the Universities of Aberdeen, Strathclyde and Edinburgh.

The contributions include:

1. Praedial Servitudes, Kenneth GC Reid
2. Title Conditions in Restraint of Trade, John A Lovett
3. Servitudes: Extinction by Non-Use, Roderick RM Paisley
4. Inheritance and the Surviving Spouse, Ronald J Scalise Jr
5. Ownership of Trust Property in Scotland and Louisiana, James Chalmers
6. The Legal Regulation of Adult Domestic Relationships, Kenneth McK Norrie
7. Impediments to Marriage in Scotland and Louisiana: An Historical - Comparative Investigation, J-R Trahan
8. Contracts of Intellectual Gratification - A Louisiana-Scotland Creation, Vernon Valentine Palmer
9. The Effect of Unexpected Circumstances on Contracts in Scots and Louisiana Law, Laura Macgregor
10. Hunting Promissory Estoppel, David V Snyder
11. Unjustified Enrichment, Subsidiarity and Contract, Hector L MacQueen
12. Causation as an Element of Delict/Tort in Scots and Louisiana Law, Martin A Hogg
13. Personality Rights: A Study in Difference, Elspeth Christie Reid.

The work should be of interest to all comparatists:

‘This is an impressive and extremely valuable contribution not only to the study of the law of mixed jurisdictions, but also of comparative law in general. Mixed jurisdictions are veritable comparative-law laboratories in continuous operation. A comparison of two such laboratories, when done with the insight, depth and sophistication that characterize this book, is a marvelous gift to comparatists and legal historians around the world.’ - Symeon C. Symeonides, Dean and Alex L. Parks Distinguished Professor of Law, President, American Society of Comparative Law

‘Fifty years ago, mixed legal systems would reach out to one another feeling embattled and lonely, as if banding together would stave off their otherwise inevitable juridical demise. Today, legal sources are increasingly recognized as mixed in nearly all jurisdictions and, as a result, places like Louisiana and Scotland are no longer seen as isolated or exotic. This book is thus doubly important: first, as comparative study of private law in Louisiana and Scotland and, second, as a work that helps explain the reconfiguration - real or imagined - of legal traditions elsewhere in this age of globalization.’ - Nicholas Kasirer, McGill University

Anyone interested in additional information on mixed legal systems should visit the website of the World Society of Mixed Jurisdiction Jurists.

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