Philosophy and the Law of Torts

By Gerald J. Postema | Go to book overview

Philosophy and the Law of Torts

When accidents occur and people suffer injuries, who ought to bear the loss? Tort law offers a complex set of rules to answer this question, but until now philosophers have offered little by way of analysis of these rules.

In eight essays commissioned for this volume, leading legal theorists examine the philosophical foundations of tort law. Among the questions they address are the following: How are the notions at the core of tort practice (such as responsibility, fault, negligence, due care, and duty to repair) to be understood? Is an explanation based on a conception of justice feasible? How are concerns of distributive and corrective justice related? What amounts to an adequate explanation of tort law?

This collection will be of interest to professionals and advanced students working in philosophy of law, social theory, political theory, and law, as well as anyone seeking a better understanding of tort law.

Gerald J. Postema is Cary C. Boshamer Professor of Philosophy and Professor of Law at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He is the author of Bentham and the Common Law Tradition (1986) and the editor of Jeremy Bentham: Moral and Legal Philosophy (2001) and Racism and the Law: The Legacy and Lessons of Plessy (1997).

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Philosophy and the Law of Torts
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page *
  • Contents *
  • Contributors ix
  • 1 - Search for an Explanatory Theory of Torts 1
  • Notes *
  • 2 - A Social Contract Conception of the Tort Law of Accidents 22
  • Notes *
  • 3 - Responsibility for Outcomes, Risk, and the Law of Torts 72
  • Notes *
  • 4 - The Significance of Doing and Suffering 131
  • Notes *
  • 5 - Preliminary Reflections on Method* 183
  • Notes *
  • 6 - Corrective Justice in an Age of Mass Torts 214
  • Notes *
  • 7 - Economics, Moral Philosophy, and the Positive Analysis of Tort Law 250
  • Notes *
  • 8 - Toward a Reasonable Accommodation 276
  • Notes *
  • References 323
  • Index 335
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