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Framing Contract Law

Framing Contract Law

An Economic Perspective

Victor Goldberg

ISBN 9780674063921

Publication date: 03/05/2012

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The central theme of this book is that an economic framework--incorporating such concepts as information asymmetry, moral hazard, and adaptation to changed circumstances--is appropriate for contract interpretation, analyzing contract disputes, and developing contract doctrine. The value of the approach is demonstrated through the close analysis of major contract cases. In many of the cases, had the court (and the litigators) understood the economic context, the analysis and results would have been very different. Topics and some representative cases include consideration (Wood v. Lucy, Lady Duff Gordon), interpretation (Bloor v. Falstaff and Columbia Nitrogen v. Royster), remedies (Campbell v. Wentz, Tongish v. Thomas, and Parker v. Twentieth Century Fox), and excuse (Alcoa v. Essex).


  • Anyone remotely sympathetic to law and economics who teaches contracts will want to see if Goldberg has something to say about a particular case before teaching it. Those who write in this field will want to have this book close at hand. In short, this is an important work that will change the way people think about contract law.

    —Douglas Baird, University of Chicago Law School


  • Victor Goldberg is Jerome L. Greene Professor of Transactional Law at Columbia Law School.

Book Details

  • 424 pages
  • 6-1/8 x 9-1/4 inches
  • Harvard University Press