The Legal Analyst: A Toolkit for Thinking about the Law by Ward Farnsworth

The Legal Analyst: A Toolkit for Thinking about the Law

byWard Farnsworth

Paperback | June 15, 2007

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There are two kinds of knowledge law school teaches: legal rules on the one hand, and tools for thinking about legal problems on the other. Although the tools are far more interesting and useful than the rules, they tend to be neglected in favor of other aspects of the curriculum. In The Legal Analyst, Ward Farnsworth brings together in one place all of the most powerful of those tools for thinking about law.

From classic ideas in game theory such as the “Prisoner’s Dilemma” and the “Stag Hunt” to psychological principles such as hindsight bias and framing effects, from ideas in jurisprudence such as the slippery slope to more than two dozen other such principles, Farnsworth’s guide leads readers through the fascinating world of legal thought. Each chapter introduces a single tool and shows how it can be used to solve different types of problems. The explanations are written in clear, lively language and illustrated with a wide range of examples.

The Legal Analyst is an indispensable user’s manual for law students, experienced practitioners seeking a one-stop guide to legal principles, or anyone else with an interest in the law.

About The Author

Ward Farnsworth, who clerked for both Judge Richard A. Posner and Justice Anthony M. Kennedy, is professor of law and Nancy Barton Scholar at the Boston University School of Law. He is the coauthor of Torts: Cases and Questions.
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Details & Specs

Title:The Legal Analyst: A Toolkit for Thinking about the LawFormat:PaperbackDimensions:326 pages, 9 × 6 × 1 inPublished:June 15, 2007Publisher:University Of Chicago PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0226238350

ISBN - 13:9780226238357

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Extra Content

Table of Contents

Preface · vii
Acknowledgments · xi

Part I. Incentives

1 Ex Ante and Ex Post
2 The Idea of Efficiency
3 Thinking at the Margin
4 The Single Owner
5 The Least Cost Avoider
6 Administrative Cost
7 Rents
8 The Coase Theorem

Part II. Trust, Cooperation, and Other Problems for Multiple Players

9 Agency (with Eric Posner)
10 The Prisoner’s Dilemma
11 Public Goods
12 The Stag Hunt
13 Chicken
14 Cascades
15 Voting Paradoxes
16 Suppressed Markets (with Saul Levmore)

Part III. Jurisprudence

17 Rules and Standards
18 Slippery Slopes (with Eugene Volokh)
19 Acoustic Separation
20 Property Rules and Liability Rules
21 Baselines
Part IV . Psychology
22 Willingness to Pay and Willingness to Accept: The Endowment Effect and Kindred Ideas
23 Hindsight Bias
24 Framing Effects
25 Anchoring
26 Self-Serving Bias, with a Note on Attribution Error

Part V. Problems of Proof

27 Presumptions
28 Standards of Proof
29 The Product Rule
30 The Base Rate
31 Value and Markets
 
Notes
Author Index
Subject Index

Editorial Reviews

“This is an outstanding book that occupies a significant and unique niche in the literature of jurisprudence and legal methodology. Farnsworth introduces students and practitioners alike to basic methods of legal analysis across a broad range of disciplines. This book should become the ultimate ‘toolkit’ for those new to the profession.”