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Cases and Materials on Torts (Law School Casebook Series) Hardcover – April, 1990
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Epstein also presents the strict liability alternative to the application of the negligence standard throughout the book, although sometimes subtly. He convinced me that strict liability is preferable in many areas of tort law, and I think that many intentionally irrational activist types who go to law school ought to be subjected to Epstein's book because it helps some of them to see things more clearly.
Epstein's comments on the cases, selected secondary source material by, for example, Holmes, Posner, and Hand, and use of still-relevant antiquated cases make this casebook one that students who are curious enough to be in law school look forward to reading.
A good legal text should do a few things. It should be edited to provide the most crucial parts of the case opinions while making what would otherwise be an unbearable amount of reading digestible in a single semester. It should also provide notes and citations that allow motivated students to further examine important concepts. Epstein does a good job on these two fronts. The cardinal sin that the book commits, as some other reviewers have noted, is that it favors the law and economics perspective to such a strong degree in its notes and selection of cases that it leaves the student with the false impression that some fairly new and controversial ideas are settled law. In reality, many of these ideas are not even close to majority views among state courts. Thankfully I had a professor who did a fairly good job of telling us when this was the case so we didn't end up completely misinformed. Had I used this book with a less experienced or knowledgeable professor, I would have had a serious problem later on dealing with some basic ideas like the relative prominence of rules about contributory negligence, comparative negligence, and strict liability, among others.
Epstein is a very intelligent scholar, but also a very opinionated one. That bias is too strong in this text to allow me to recommend its use.