Combining natural law theory, reliance theory, and economic analysis to develop a jurisprudential approach, this is a prescriptive work presenting a vision of what contract law would be like if it were devoted to teaching moral virtue.
Combining natural law theory, reliance theory, and economic analysis to develop a jurisprudential approach, this is a prescriptive work presenting a vision of what contract law would be like if it were devoted to teaching moral virtue. The jurisprudential approach draws upon insights of Aristotle, Saint Thomas Aquinas, and other thinkers in the natural law tradition. The author applies this approach to selected legal issues to produce the only contemporary book that uses a natural law approach in prescribing specific reforms in American contract law.
Although this study is theoretical, the author, who practiced law for more than eight years, explains technical terms for non-specialist readers. The book employs a pluralistic moral theory and presents a serious challenge to contemporary jurisprudential theories that focus on some single dominant value. A key idea is that contract law should teach and employ certain moral principles when applied to legal issues related to enforceability, remedies, offer and acceptance, and nondisclosure. With respect to each issue, the author compares his proposed resolution with the prevailing current law.
Preface The Purposes of Promise Three Deficient Theories of Justice A Natural Law Approach to Contract Law Enforceable Promises Remedies Mutual Assent: Offer and Acceptance Policing the Bargaining Process: Nondisclosure Why Natural Law Index
Endorsements The author's contribution to the understanding of modern contract law...is very important....The theory he develops...is a very impressive, highly original, and carefully worked out effort to ground legal doctrine on higher principles....His use of current ideas is refreshingly honest....The author's writing style is beautifully clear.—James Russell Gordley^LShannan Cecil Turner Professor of Jurisprudence^LUniversity of California at Berkeley
Mather's book advocates a somewhat unusual position in the contemporary discussion of contract law....He claims that a fundamental purpose of contract law is to teach and enforce certain basic moral principles....He is attempting to reinvigorate a sorely needed discussion of the role of contract law in supporting society's moral commitments....Mather has made a significant contribution to the study of contract law....The book is very well organized and written in an exceptionally clear manner.—M. Cathleen Kaveny^LAssociate Professor^LNotre Dame Law School