Title

Legal Information and the Development of American Law: Writings on the Form and Structure of the Published Law

Document Type

Article

Comments

The most up-to-date version of this piece can be found in the Duke Law Scholarship

Abstract

Robert C. Berring’s writings about the impacts of electronic databases, the Internet, and other communications technologies on legal research and practice are an essential part of a larger literature that explores the ways in which the forms and structures of published legal information have influenced how American lawyers think about the law. This paper reviews Berring’s writings, along with those of other writers concerned with these questions, focusing on the implications of Berring’s idea that in the late nineteenth century American legal publishers created a “conceptual universe of thinkable thoughts” through which U.S. lawyers came to view the law. It concludes that, spurred by Berring and others, the literature of legal information has become far reaching in scope and interdisciplinary in approach, while the themes struck in Berring’s work continue to inform the scholarship of newer writers.

Date of Authorship for this Version

February 2007

Keywords

legal information, legal research, legal history, classification,