Book Review, Nicholas Mercuro & Steven G. Medema, Economics and the Law: From Posner to Post-Modernism

5 Pages Posted: 13 Mar 2014  

James Ming Chen

Michigan State University - College of Law

Date Written: 1998

Abstract

It is no longer credible to speak of a single “law and economics” movement. Rather, there are multiple schools of thought, each applying economic analysis of law in a distinct way and none commanding widespread acceptance. Chaos would seem the natural result of any attempt to marry economics, a value-laden discipline beset by critics who decry the immorality of the “dismal science,” with law, a profession as methodologically incoherent as it is intellectually promiscuous. A literature of staggering size and dazzling diversity thus confronts anyone who tries to survey law and economics “from Posner to post-modernism.”

In Economics and the Law, Nicholas Mercuro and Steven G. Medema acknowledge the Herculean nature of their task by confining themselves to “a concise overview” of thisd field. Mercuro and Medema nevertheless promise more than they can deliver. With each blow at the many-headed Hydra that economic analysis of law has become, the authors leave marginally useful abstraction and significantly offsetting confusion in their wake.

Suggested Citation

Chen, James Ming, Book Review, Nicholas Mercuro & Steven G. Medema, Economics and the Law: From Posner to Post-Modernism (1998). Public Choice, Vol. 97, pp. 205-09, 1998. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2408097

James Ming Chen (Contact Author)

Michigan State University - College of Law ( email )

318 Law College Building
East Lansing, MI 48824-1300
United States

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