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A History of American Law$
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Lawrence M. Friedman

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780190070885

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2019

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190070885.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 25 October 2021

The Growth of the Law

The Growth of the Law

(p.661) 2 The Growth of the Law
A History of American Law

Lawrence M. Friedman

Oxford University Press

This chapter discusses changes in American law in the twentieth century, covering welfare, workers’ compensation, tort law, civil rights, First Nations, Asian Americans, Hispanics, freedom of speech, and religion. One of the most striking developments in the twentieth century was the so-called liability explosion: the vast increase in liability in tort, mostly for personal injuries. The nineteenth century—particularly the early part—had built up the law of torts, almost from nothing; courts created a huge, complicated structure, a system with many rooms, chambers, corridors, but with an overall ethos of limited liability, and something of a tilt toward enterprise. The structure was wobbling a bit, by the end of the nineteenth century, and the twentieth century worked fairly diligently to tear the whole thing down. One of the first doctrines to go was the fellow-servant rule.

Keywords:   American law, welfare, workers’ compensation, tort law, civil rights, fellow-servant rule

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