Harold Berman's masterwork narrates the interaction of evolution and revolution in the development of Western law. This new volume explores two successive transformations of the Western legal tradition under the impact of the sixteenth-century German Reformation and the seventeenth-century English Revolution, with particular emphasis on Lutheran and Calvinist influences. Berman examines the far-reaching consequences of these apocalyptic political and social upheavals on the systems of legal philosophy, legal science, criminal law, civil and economic law, and social law in Germany and England and throughout Europe as a whole.
Berman challenges both conventional approaches to legal history, which have neglected the religious foundations of Western legal systems, and standard social theory, which has paid insufficient attention to the communitarian dimensions of early modern economic law, including corporation law and social welfare.
Clearly written and cogently argued, this long-awaited, magisterial work is a major contribution to an understanding of the relationship of law to Western belief systems.
Harold J. Berman was Woodruff Professor of Law at Emory University and Ames Professor of Law, Emeritus, at Harvard University.
Preface Introduction I. The German Revolution and the Transformation of German Law in the Sixteenth Century 1. The Reformation of the Church and of the State, 1517-1555 2. Lutheran Legal Philosophy 3. The Transformation of German Legal Science 4. The Transformation of German Criminal Law 5. The Transformation of German Civil and Economic Law 6. The Transformation of German Social Law Ii. The English Revolution and the Transformation of English Law in the Seventeenth Century 7. The English Revolution, 1640-1689 8. The Transformation of English Legal Philosophy 9. The Transformation of English Legal Science 10. The Transformation of English Criminal Law 11. The Transformation of English Civil and Economic Law 12. The Transformation of English Social Law Conclusion Notes Acknowledgments Index