Chapter

The Rational and the National: Thomas Broun Smith<sup>1</sup>

George L Gretton

in A Mixed Legal System in Transition

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print July 2005 | ISBN: 9780748623358
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748651467 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3366/edinburgh/9780748623358.003.0002
The Rational and the National: Thomas Broun Smith1

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This chapter has two themes. The first is that Smith's seriousness about law was not merely a mask for ‘nationalism’. Smith was an irredentist, but his was a Civilian irredentism more than a Scottish one, and his Civilianism was not merely a proxy for nationalism. It argues that Smith was broadly right about the Civilian tradition's value in private law, though he sometimes overstated, and thereby harmed, his case. The second theme is that Smith's belief in the Civilian cause was largely limited to what he regarded as the central core of private law. It argues that Smith underestimated the importance of Civilian concepts to the remainder of private law.

Keywords: T B Smith; civilian irredentism; civiliamism; private law; nationalism

Chapter.  6732 words. 

Subjects: History of Law

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