Vanderbilt Law Review

First Page



To evaluate this book as a teaching tool one must consider several questions. First, of what value is an economic analysis of law? Second, should one consider economics in a corporations or securities law course? Third, does this book offer a worthwhile approach to bringing economics into the corporate law curriculum? Last, how well has this approach been executed in the book? It may be a bit late to ponder the value of an economic analysis of the law. Economic legal theorists are both extending and deepening the thinking about economics' role in facilitating an understanding of law. This new thinking encompasses broad nonmarket areas of the law, including privacy, criminal law,' and constitutional law.' In addition, scholars now are attempting to transcend the descriptive or "positive" focus of the analysis--arguing that the law develops in accordance with economic principles such as the desire of individuals in society to maximize their wealth-and articulate a "normative" theory of economic legal analysis--arguing that the legal system should be founded upon economic principles such as wealth maximization. Indeed,the economic approach to law has taken on the trappings of a new and competing jurisprudential philosophy.'