Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Edwards on Acceptable Deviance and Property Rights

Mark A. Edwards (William Mitchell) has posted Acceptable Deviance and Property Rights, forthcoming in the Connecticut Law Review (2010).  The abstract:

Compliance with – or deviance from – law is often dependent upon the law’s convergence with – or divergence from – normative sensibilities. Where the legality and social acceptability of behavior diverge, deviance is socially acceptable. Property rights evolve in response to changes in normative sensibilities. Constructing a model of acceptable deviance and applying it to property rights, we can predict and actually observe the evolution of property rights in response to changes in normative sensibilities in areas as diverse as file-sharing, foreclosures, the use of public space, and fishing rights. We can also predict and observe stresses in legal institutions created by divergences in the legality and social acceptability of behavior with regard to property rights. Law functions as an anchor on behavior, providing stability, but also space for deviance which permits the evolution of property rights.

Check it out-- Prof. Edwards has a lot of interesting posts over at Property Prof, and this article sounds good too. 

Matt Festa

http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/land_use/2010/04/edwards-on-acceptable-deviance-and-property-rights.html

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