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Contracts

Faculty Publications

2011

Breach of Contract

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Full-Text Articles in Law

Consent To Retaliation: A Civil Recourse Theory Of Contractual Liability, Nathan B. Oman Jan 2011

Consent To Retaliation: A Civil Recourse Theory Of Contractual Liability, Nathan B. Oman

Faculty Publications

In the ancient Near East, contracts were often solemnized by hacking up a goat. The ritual was an enacted penalty clause: ā€œIf I breach this contract, let it be done to me as we are doing to the goat.ā€ This Article argues that we are not so far removed from our goat-hacking forbearers. Legal scholars have argued that contractual liability is best explained by the morality of promise making, or by the need to create optimal incentives in contractual performance. In contrast, this Article argues for the simpler, rawer claim that contractual liability consists of consent to retaliation in the ā€¦