'Opening the Barbarians' Gate' or Watching the Barbarians from the Coliseum: A Requiem on the Nomos of the Louisiana Civil Law

38 Pages Posted: 15 Aug 2006 Last revised: 5 Feb 2013

See all articles by Marc Lane Roark

Marc Lane Roark

The Savannah Law School; Southern University Law Center

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: 2006

Abstract

Comparative Law tends to focus on the differences and similarities present in different legal systems. Such analysis has led some to conclude that a third legal system has appeared in the West and in particular in Louisiana. The idea of a mixed jurisdiction, they claim, combines certain elements of Civil law and Common law into a hybrid system. This article challenges the supposition that a legal system's core identity can be of a mixed nature. Rather, this article suggests that the proper way a legal system should be viewed is through its normative values as depicted in the narratives the system spawns - a Nomos that directs the purveyors of the system towards the sources and identity that the system enchants. Focusing primarily on Louisiana, Part I of this article describes three normative elements that narratives tell about the Louisiana civil law: its Frenchness, its distinctiveness, and its dependency on a Code. Part II then tells two narratives that demonstrate how these narratives are revealed, even when they are not completely accurate. Part III challenges the readers to inhabit the Nomos.

Keywords: Civil Law, Mixed Jurisdictions, Bijural, Common Law, Robert Cover, Slave Law, Secured Transactions

Suggested Citation

Roark, Marc L., 'Opening the Barbarians' Gate' or Watching the Barbarians from the Coliseum: A Requiem on the Nomos of the Louisiana Civil Law (2006). Louisiana Law Review, Vol. 67, 2007. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=923829

Marc L. Roark (Contact Author)

The Savannah Law School ( email )

516 Drayton Street
Savannah, GA 31401
United States

Southern University Law Center ( email )

2 Roosevelt Steptoe Dr.
Baton Rouge, LA 70813
United States

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