Danielle Kie Hart (Southwestern Law School) has posted Cross Purposes & Unintended Consequences – Karl Llewellyn, Legal Realism and the Limits of Social Transformation to SSRN. From the abstract:

This Essay attempts to explain why Llewellyn’s efforts to reform contract law have had such serious, long-term but unintended consequences for the modern contract law system. It does so in an unorthodox way. Instead of drawing from traditional contract-law scholarship, the Essay imports insights from two seemingly unrelated fields – civil rights law and social philosophy. The Essay’s central thesis is that revising existing doctrine will rarely if ever result in meaningful change in the modern contract law system. In fact, doctrinal reform will almost always be counter-productive, as reforms from within will only rebuild power, advancing and further protecting the interests of the privileged.

 

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