Saturday, October 23, 2010
Monday's Guest Blogger is James R. Hackney, Jr., Professor of Law and Faculty Director of Research at Northeastern University School of Law, where he teaches in the areas of torts, corporate finance, corporations, critical race theory, and law and economics.
Professor Hackney’s research focuses on intellectual history, torts, the mutual fund industry, law and economics, and critical race theory. He is the author of the acclaimed book, Under Cover of Science: American Legal-Economic Theory and the Quest for Objectivity (Duke University Press, 2007). Selected publications include Book Review, “On Markets and Regulation: Richard Posner’s Conservative Pragmatist Evolution” (reviewing Richard Posner’s A Failure of Capitalism: The Crisis of ’08 and the Descent into Depression), 3 Law and Financial Markets Review 539 (2009); “Duties of Fund Directors Under State Law,” Fund Governance: Legal Duties of Investment Company Directors. Robertson, ed. Law Journal Press, 2005; “Ideological Conflict, African American Reparations, Tort Causation and the Case for Social Welfare Transformation,” 84 Boston University Law Review 1193 (2004); “Law and Neoclassical Economics Theory: A Critical History of the Distribution/Efficiency Debate,” 32 Journal of Socio-Economics 361 (2003); “Law and Neoclassical Economics: Science, Politics and the Reconfiguration of American Tort Law Theory,” 15 Law and History Review 275 (1997); “The Intellectual Origins of American Strict Products Liability: A Case Study in American Pragmatic Instrumentalism,” 39 American Journal of Legal History 443 (1995); and “A Proposal for State Funding of Municipal Tort Liability,” 98 Yale Law Journal 389 (1988).
In 1997-98, Professor Hackney was a Visiting Professor of Law and John M. Olin Fellow at the University of Southern California. He also has taught as a Visiting Professor at Boston University School of Law and Harvard Law School. Professor Hackney has served on the Executive Committee for the AALS Torts & Compensation Systems Section, and was Co-Chair of the AALS Socio-Economics Section. In 2003 & 2005, he was named Teacher of the Year. Prior to joining the Northeastern faculty, Professor Hackney was an associate with the Los Angeles law firm of Irell & Manella.
Thursday, October 21, 2010
Yesterday in San Antonio, a civil jury found a nursing home negligent in the care of a man who developed severe, infected bed sores. The nearly $600,000 verdict will be reduced by a damage cap to $250,000. In a newspaper interview, the plaintiff's attorney argued that such trials had become rare because of the cap. My SA.com has the story.
Wednesday, October 20, 2010
Vanderbilt Law School is hosting a celebration of Richard Nagareda's life on Friday, November 12, at 4:00 p.m. in the Flynn Auditorium, with a reception to follow. We invite you to join us.
Parking for visitors who want to attend the memorial will be available in Lot 5B, which is located directly across from the law school at the intersection of 21st Avenue and Broadway.
Alumni, friends and former colleagues are invited to honor Professor Nagareda by sharing your memories of him with us. You may send your tributes via email to email@example.com for posting on a private web page set up for alumni and friends, or mail your tribute or a letter of condolence with a note indicating whether you’d like your tribute posted online or only forwarded to Richard’s family to us at:
Vanderbilt University Law School/Nagareda Memorials
131 21st Ave. South
Nashville, TN 37203
You may also honor Richard by donating to a memorial fund we have established at the family's request to support a student scholarship by clicking here by sending a check to us at the address above.
Vanderbilt also has provided a detailed obituary listing the many accomplishments of Professor Nagareda.
Tuesday, October 19, 2010
Monday, October 18, 2010
Geoffrey Rapp (Toledo) has posted his article, Defense Against Outrage and the Perils of Parasitic Torts, on SSRN. The abstract provides:
In Snyder v. Phelps, the Supreme Court will soon weigh whether protestors at a slain soldier’s funeral committed the tort of Intentional Infliction of Emotional Distress (IIED) or engaged in protected speech. Imagine that Mr. Snyder, the IIED plaintiff and soldier’s father, had, rather than bring a tort claim, used physical force to defend himself from the arguably tortious conduct of Phelps and his crowd. Can force be used to defend against intentional extreme or outrageous conduct threatening a person with severe emotional distress? The answer in the case law and articulated doctrine appears to be “no.”
Two prominent narratives in tort law scholarship address the increasing recognition of claims for loss of emotional tranquility and the expanding privilege to use force in defense of self and others. This Article explores a puzzle in tort law that challenges these traditional accounts. The law permits the use of force to protect dignitary interests, in the case of offensive battery and assault, but seems to deny the use of force to protect against IIED. No basis for this distinction appears in the leading theoretical accounts of tort law – economics, corrective justice, and civil recourse theory. Rather, the basis of the rule seems to be the childhood maxim, “Sticks and stones…,” without strong theoretical or policy justification.
Two implications arise. First, the law continues to privilege physical security above emotional well-being. Second, although it is arguably the most successful “new” tort of the twentieth century, IIED remains a tort whose boundaries are murky and whose place in tort doctrine is unclear. The parasitic nature of IIED has complicated the effort to build clear doctrine around all but the most essential elements of the claim.