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Liability for Negligence and Judicial Discretion

Law and economics scholar Parisi examines the concept of fault in civil law, both historically and doctrinally, in Liability for Negligence. From its historical roots in ancient law, through Roman law, medieval Europe, to Judge Learned Hand's seminal decisions in T.J. Hooper and Carroll Towing and modern tort liability, the author traces the development of fault to its modern antecedent: liability for negligence. Parisi notes the problems of tort liability stem both from inherent difficulties traceable back to Roman times and from modern judicial confusion about the proper application of the "reasonable person" standard. The ultimate dilemma´┐Żbetween generalized versus individualized standards of liability´┐Żis laid out in careful detail, and is a valuable contribution to the debate over legal reform.

Francesco Parisi, Professor, George Mason University School of Law, University of Milan School of Law (University of California at Berkeley, 1992)



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