Legal Irritants: Good Faith in British Law or How Unifying Law Ends Up in New Differences

Modern Law Review, Vol. 61, pp. 11-32, 1998

THE EUROPEANISATION OF LAW, Francis Snyder, ed., Hart, Oxford, pp. 243-267, 2000

VARIETIES OF CAPITALISM, Peter Hall and David Soskice, eds., Oxford University Press, pp. 417-441, 2001

22 Pages Posted: 22 Aug 2006 Last revised: 15 Sep 2009

See all articles by Gunther Teubner

Gunther Teubner

Johann Wolfgang Goethe Universität

Date Written: 1998

Abstract

Legal irritant explains the transfer of legal rules from one country to another better than legal transplant. When a foreign rule is imposed on a domestic culture, it is not transplanted into another organism, rather it works as a fundamental irritation which triggers a whole series of new and unexpected events. It irritates law's binding arrangements with other social sectors. Legal irritants cannot be domesticated, they are not transformed from something alien into something familiar, not adapted to a new cultural context, rather they will unleash an evolutionary dynamics in which the external rule's meaning will be reconstructed anew and the internal context will undergo fundamental change. As the example of the imposition of good faith on English law demonstrates, the concept of legal irritants has far-reaching consequences for the transfer of private law rules from one economic culture to the other. The imperatives of a specific Anglo-American economic culture as against a specific Continental one will bring about a fundamental reconstruction of good faith under the new conditions.

Keywords: legal theory, system theory

JEL Classification: K10, K40

Suggested Citation

Teubner, Gunther, Legal Irritants: Good Faith in British Law or How Unifying Law Ends Up in New Differences (1998). Modern Law Review, Vol. 61, pp. 11-32, 1998; THE EUROPEANISATION OF LAW, Francis Snyder, ed., Hart, Oxford, pp. 243-267, 2000; VARIETIES OF CAPITALISM, Peter Hall and David Soskice, eds., Oxford University Press, pp. 417-441, 2001. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=876950

Gunther Teubner (Contact Author)

Johann Wolfgang Goethe Universität ( email )

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Frankfurt am Main, D-60323
Germany
0049 69 71034781 (Phone)
0049 69 798-34405 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.jura.uni-frankfurt.de/ifawz1/teubner/

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