This book provides the reader with a critical insight into the history and theory of copyright within contemporary legal and cultural discourse. It exposes as myth the orthodox history of the development of copyright law in eighteenth-century Britain and explores the way in which that myth became entrenched throughout the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. To this historical analysis are added two theoretical approaches to copyright not otherwise found in mainstream contemporary texts. Rethinking Copyright introduces the reader to copyright through the prism of the public domain before turning to the question as to how best to locate copyright within the parameters of traditional property discourse. Moreover, underpinning these various historical and theoretical strands, the book explores the constitutive power of legal writing and the place of rhetoric in framing and determining contemporary copyright policy and discourse.
Ronan Deazley's book will be of interest to academics and practitioners of law and intellectual property. The work should also be of interest to those working in alternate disciplines such as literary and cultural theorists and bibliographers
Ronan Deazley, School of Law, Queen's University Belfast, UK
Contents: Introduction 1. History I: 1710-1774 2. History II: 1774-1854 3. History III: 1854-1912 4. Theory I: What Copyright Isn't. . . or, Conceiving the Public Domain 5. Theory II: What is Copyright?. . . or, The Case for Intellectual Property Freedoms and Privileges (And in That Order) 6. Conclusion References Index