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Unjust Enrichment$
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Peter Birks

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9780199276981

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199276981.001.0001

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Three Maps

Three Maps

(p.20) 2 Three Maps
Unjust Enrichment

Peter Birks

Oxford University Press

The mapping metaphor was first used by William Blackstone in 1756, when he said that the duty of the ‘academical expounder of the laws’ was to make clear how the various parts of the law fitted together. This chapter is concerned with three maps which together show where unjust enrichment belongs and how it is itself divided. The first of the three maps fixes its relation to other categories of the same kind. The second relates those event-based categories, and unjust enrichment in particular, to the law of obligations and the law of property. These are not categories of causative event but of responses to events. The third map raises the level of magnification so as to expose the layout of unjust enrichment itself. This chapter gives a more complete picture of the classification of rights by reference to their causative event and looks at four categories of civil wrongs: torts, equitable wrongs, breaches of statutory duty not amounting to a tort, and breaches of contract.

Keywords:   unjust enrichment, maps, causative event, law of obligations, law of property, civil wrongs, torts, statutory duty, breaches of contract, rights

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