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The Concept of Modern Law

Polish and Central European Tradition


Edited By Michał Peno and Konrad Burdziak

This book contains texts prepared by representatives of various branches of law, philosophers and dogmatists who link a general reflection on law with caselaw. This ensures that the presented approaches are versatile and insightful, and that the addressed issues vary, the most important of which is the oeuvre of the Polish jurisprudence and its contribution to building a modern state and legal theories. The context exceeds beyond a simple report on or presentation of this oeuvre and, in many cases, it only refers to it.

The primary aim of this book is to determine, as follows: 1) the source (at least the potential source) of modernist solutions in the Polish law, 2) the realness of the modernist character of the said source and 3) the refection of these modernist solutions in the currently binding Polish law.

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The Theories and Views of Leon Petrażycki and the Creation and Development of Labour Law


1 Introductory Remarks

Leon Petrażycki (1867–1931), considered to be one of the most outstanding and well-recognised Polish lawyers in the world1, became famous primarily as the ←45 | 46→author of the psychological theory of law2, creator of the scientific politics of law and political economy3, father of the sociological approach to the analysis of issues of law and legal issues4, and, in the light of the latest discoveries, also as the ←46 | 47→precursor of the economic analysis of law5, especially the so-called behavioural trend” (behavioural law and economics)6. Few contemporary researchers, however, are aware7 that L. Petrażycki should also be credited with the intellectual and moral merits in the process of gradual crystallization of labour law (as we ←47 | 48→know it now). His original, bold, revolutionary and surprisingly accurate (given the time they were expressed) views on the need to increase the legal protection of people pursuing gainful employment and even to create a separate area of civil law for this type of social relations, which did not yet exist at that time – labour law – received a lot of attention in the legal world of that time. The reason for this was not only the high intellectual and cognitive value of the arguments presented by L. Petrażycki, but also the fact that they were presented and extensively justified on the occasion of criticism of the project of the German Civil Code – BGB, being of general interest, (in a work...

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