Development of Comparative Law in France

Bénédicte Fauvarque-Cosson

in The Oxford Handbook of Comparative Law

Published in print November 2006 | ISBN: 9780199296064
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Law

Development of Comparative Law in France


France has a long and solid tradition of comparative law. This article traces the discipline's development in France, describing its strengths and weaknesses. As universal a science as it is, comparative law has distinctive features in each country. While there is currently no such thing as French or Italian comparative law in the sense that there is French or Italian contracts law, there is an identifiable French style in comparative law that is closely related to the development of French legal thought in general. The never-ending question of the purpose of comparative law emerges as one of the fundamental jurisprudential debates of the twentieth century. The first section of this article details the historical rise of comparative law in France. The second section chronicles its decline. The third section predicts its renaissance, provided the French give the study of comparative law the regard it is due.

Keywords: comparative law; France; Paris; French legal thought; jurisprudential debates

Article.  16017 words. 

Subjects: Law ; Comparative Law

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