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A History of American Law, Revised Edition

A History of American Law, Revised Edition

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A History of American Law has become a classic for students of law, American history and sociology across the country. In this brilliant and immensely readable book, Lawrence M. Friedman tells the whole fascinating story of American law from its beginnings in the colonies to the present day. By showing how close the life of the law is to the economic and political life of the country, he makes a complex subject understandable and engrossing. A History of American Law presents the achievements and failures of the American legal system in the context of America's commercial and working world, family practices and attitudes toward property, slavery, government, crime and justice.

Now Professor Friedman has completely revised and enlarged his landmark work, incorporating a great deal of new material. The book contains newly expanded notes, a bibliography and a bibliographical essay.
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  • Touchstone | 
  • 784 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781451602661 | 
  • June 2010
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CHAPTER 1

THE REPUBLIC OF BEES

REVOLUTIONARY ARDOR

In 1776, the colonies declared themselves independent. The bitter war that followed ended in an American victory. Peace, of course, raised as many questions of government as it answered. A plan of government is a plan for distribution of the power and wealth of a society. The choice of system, then, is no idle exercise in political theory. How to plan the new American government was the major policy issue of the late 18th century. The first grand scheme was embodied in the Articles of Confederation. It proved unsatisfactory to powerful circles in the country. After the... see more

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