July 16, 2010
The Anatomy of Corporate Law
Posted by Gordon Smith

I am in London teaching a course called "Corporations: U.S. and Transnational Perspectives" through the Georgetown Law Center's Summer Program. The students are excellent, and the facilities -- classes at King's College, offices on High Holborn -- are nice. My apartment in Islington? Ok ... but shouldn't Baker's Row have a baker on it?

Anyway, the core of my course is US corporate law, and I am using my casebook to teach that, but I have enjoyed using the "transnational" aspect of the course as an excuse to read the second edition of Anatomy of Corporate Law, an excellent primer on comparative corporate law by Reinier Kraakman, John Armour, Paul Davies, Luca Enriques, Henry B. Hansmann, Gérard Hertig, Klaus J. Hopt, Hideki Kanda, and Edward B. Rock. That's a terrific lineup of authors, and they do not disappoint. The new edition is even better then the first, which I used five years ago to teach a similar class in Lund, Sweden.

The book is well written and insightful, relying on a functional approach to compare the regulation of corporations in various jurisdictions. It bears the marks of deep, thoughtful conversations among sophisticated analysts. But it is accessible, less like a typical law review article than an essay in The Economist. If you are interested in adding a transnational perspective to your study of corporate law, I have a hard time imagining a better starting place.

Comparative Law, Corporate Governance, Corporate Law | Bookmark

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