Debating Law's Irrelevance: Legal Scholarship and the Coase Theorem in the 1960s
Texas A&M Law Review 2 (December 2014).
70 Pages Posted: 13 Dec 2012 Last revised: 13 Aug 2014
Date Written: August 6, 2014
This paper examines the diffusion of Coase’s negotiation result -- now better known as the 'Coase theorem' -- in the legal literature during the 1960s, with particular attention paid to the challenge that this result posed for received legal thinking, how the it related to far older attempts to bring economic thinking to bear on the law, how legal scholars utilized it in their analysis, and how the treatment of this result by legal scholars compares to that accorded it by economists during this formative stage in the Coase theorem’s history. What will emerge, in the end, is an enhanced understanding of how the Coase theorem came to have a place in legal scholarship, as well as some additional insight into this neglected epoch in the history of the economic analysis of law.
Keywords: Coase theorem, law and economics
JEL Classification: K00, B2
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation