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Monday, November 7, 2011

Teaching Tip: Joint Tenancy = Borg

Hello after a long, long absence.

If you are using the ubiquitous Dukeminier textbook, you may well be approaching or already teaching concurrent interests.  I find students have diffculty with the concept of the 4 unities of the joint tenancy, so I like to have some fun with it by analogizing the joint tenancy to the Borg, the ultimate foe from Star Trek: The Next Generation.  (Oh, admit it: you're a geek too or you wouldn't be reading this blog).

Sometimes, I even play them part of this clip to make the point:

 

"Who are you?"

"I am the Borg."

"That is a contradiction.  The Borg have a collective consciousness.  There are no individuals."

"I am the beginning.  The end.  The one who is many. I am the Borg."

Like the Borg, in the joint tenancy, individuals are subsumed into the group, inseparable from the collective entity, and their deaths have no effect on the collective.  It simply continues without them, leaderless.

And, for those of you are real Star Trek geeks, you can take it a step further and talk about what it takes to sever an individual from the group, and how even then, the dissolution may not be complete (in much less exciting terms, it creates a tenancy it common).

However, unlike the Borg, join tenancies are not the purest form of evil in the universe.  At least as far as I know.

I have to tell you, they seem to get.  Try it!

Mark A. Edwards

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