The central theme of this book is that an economic framework - incorporating such concepts as information asymmetry, moral hazard, and adaptation to changed circumstances - is appropriate for contract interpretation, analyzing contract disputes, and developing contract doctrine. The value of the approach is demonstrated through the close analysis of major contract cases. In many of the cases, had the court (and the litigators) understood the economic context, the analysis and results would have been very different. Topics and some representative cases include consideration (Wood v. Lucy, Lady Duff Gordon), interpretation (Bloor v. Falstaff and Columbia Nitrogen v. Royster), remedies (Campbell v. Wentz, Tongish v. Thomas, and Parker v. Twentieth Century Fox), and excuse (Alcoa v. Essex).
Victor Goldberg is Jerome L. Greene Professor of Transactional Law at Columbia Law School.