Property's Four Dimensions: Theory, Space, Stringency, and Time
This chapter offers a different way to understand and analyze the concept of property. It argues that property is a complex package of normative choices that is not fully or adequately illuminated by any of the conventional understandings of property that have been offered. Those understandings — which focus on the theories of rights that property may involve — identify and describe one dimension of common legal conceptions of property. However, property is considerably more complex. Selection of a theory of rights is necessary for any legally cognizable conception of property; in addition to this, we must choose content for the dimensions of space, stringency, and time. It is only through specification of all these dimensions and the questions they raise that we can illuminate all of the choices that property — as used in law — in fact involves.
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