Gregory Alexander's new book The Global Debate over Constitutional Property provides a unique opportunity to reflect upon the functions of comparative law and the nature of ownership. This Comment highlights the role of comparative law in upsetting law's tendency to turn contingency into necessity, but also warns against the illusion that comparative law can yield normative conclusions without an independent and critically constructive legal inquiry. The Comment offers such an inquiry in order to substantiate Alexander's call to adopt the German constitutional model of incorporating social responsibility into the concept of property. It studies the reasons as well as the potential risks entailed by such a move, and outlines the contours of a takings doctrine that takes the social responsibility of property owners seriously.
Property Law and Real Estate
Date of this Version
Hanoch Dagan, "The Social Responsibility of Ownership" (September 2006). Tel Aviv University Law Faculty Papers. Working Paper 35.