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Le marché du non-marchand. À propos de deux ouvrages récents


  • Jean-Jacques Sueur


This paper analyses two books, recently published in France. Following different methods, these books deal with the problem of foundations and basic concepts of law and economic law : ownership, regulation, individualism, utility, power and so on. The authors (sociologists) show all the profit that lawyers or economists may draw from the research conducted by Bentham and the English “utilitarianism school” (to whom the book of Christian Laval, called “L’homme économique” is dedicated) as well as the extraordinary intellectual resources and inventions of a work like that of Spinoza (“Spinoza et les sciences sociales”, edited by Yves Citton and Frederic Lordon, as a collection of studies dedicated to the “modernity” of Spinoza). Bentham proposes an original and rather materialist reading of the law, by taking into account the actors themselves, their powers and calculations according to certain purposes ; he proclaims also “common utility” as the supreme aim of mankind. Spinoza himself does not omit the part of individuals in the social system (“affects”), but his approach is quite different : the keyword of his philosophy and political representation is endeavour (“conatus”) ; enemy of all mediations – like the state and law – he paints power, all frames of powers, exactly as they are in fact, i.e. as a pure strength, without any “make-up”. All these propositions are very interesting for the specialist of economic law, with all the transpositions that they suggest.

Suggested Citation

  • Jean-Jacques Sueur, 2008. "Le marché du non-marchand. À propos de deux ouvrages récents," Revue internationale de droit économique, De Boeck Université, vol. 0(4), pages 459-485.
  • Handle: RePEc:cai:riddbu:ride_224_0459

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