Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Concepts in Law and EconomicsA Guide for the Curious$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Jim Leitzel

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780190213978

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190213978.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.oxfordscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2019. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 20 October 2019

E pluribus unum [One Out of Many]

E pluribus unum [One Out of Many]

Chapter:
(p.1) 1 E pluribus unum [One Out of Many]
Source:
Concepts in Law and Economics
Author(s):

Jim Leitzel

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190213978.003.0001

A person living in complete isolation will serve society’s interests when she serves her own interests because she constitutes all of her society. When multiple people share a society, however, we can no longer be guaranteed that an individual’s choices will promote social well-being. Law can help form a successful society, a cohesive one-out-of-many, by encouraging people to take the interests of others into account when making decisions. If different people have different preferences, it is not obvious what constitutes society’s overall interests. Law and Economics follows in the footsteps of utilitarian philosopher Jeremy Bentham (1748‒1832), associating the social good with a type of economic efficiency. As long as people can negotiate and forge agreements at low cost, they will choose non-wasteful rules, rules that result in efficiency. This insight lies behind the most famous Law and Economics result, termed the Coase Theorem after Professor Ronald Coase (1910‒2013).

Keywords:   efficiency, Jeremy Bentham, Ronald Coase, social well-being, society

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .