How West Law Was Made: The Company, its Products, and its Promotions

Charleston Law Review, Vol. 6, No. 2, pp. 231-282, Winter 2012

George Mason Law & Economics Research Paper No. 12-34

52 Pages Posted: 4 Apr 2012  

Ross E. Davies

George Mason University - Antonin Scalia Law School, Faculty; The Green Bag

Date Written: April 4, 2012

Abstract

Only in American law is West not primarily a geographical term. When we lawyers think of West we tend to think first of West Publishing Company – the preeminent source of printed law books since before we were born and of electronic law databases in recent years. But despite its importance to the development and dissemination of American law, West itself is a creature most of us do not know much about; we know only its products. That is not our fault, because there is only a little bit of information available, and much of that little bit is hard to find. This Article offers some perspective on the roots of West, the publishing company, and of its primacy (or at least the primacy of its brand) in the consciousness of modern American lawyers.

Keywords: Black’s, blanket, Bryan Garner, cupcake, dictionary, federal, Henry Campbell Black, Jarvis, John B., Key Number, knickknacks, Lexis, marketing, Marshall, Marvin, Mitchell, National Reporter System, Nexis, regional reporters, Reuters, Robert C. Berring, Syllabi, Thompson, Thomson, Westlaw, Woxland

JEL Classification: A20, C15, C80, C93, D71, D72, K00, K2, K21, K23, K40

Suggested Citation

Davies, Ross E., How West Law Was Made: The Company, its Products, and its Promotions (April 4, 2012). Charleston Law Review, Vol. 6, No. 2, pp. 231-282, Winter 2012; George Mason Law & Economics Research Paper No. 12-34. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2034499

Ross E. Davies (Contact Author)

George Mason University - Antonin Scalia Law School, Faculty ( email )

3301 Fairfax Drive
Arlington, VA 22201
United States

The Green Bag ( email )

6600 Barnaby St., NW
Washington, DC 20015
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.greenbag.org

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