This book is a memoir that a great master of comparative law, Rudolf B. Schlesinger, wrote for the benefit of his children and grandchildren.
Rudolf B. Schlesinger
The Common Core of European Private Law
book | published | 1st edition
July 2022 | xviii + 118 pp.



ISBN 9781839702761

When you check this box, you will be subscribed to the series. If you subscribe to the series, each new volume will automatically be sent to you. You can only cancel your subscription after having received two consecutive volumes.



ISBN 9781839702921

When purchasing an E-book from Intersentia you get instant access to all available digital formats.

Available formats: Epub  Pdf 


This book is a memoir that a great master of comparative law wrote for the benefit of his children and grandchildren. It is the story of the life and accomplishments of a man that had to flee Nazi brutality and found a new home in the United States. The life and the work of this exceptionally gifted scholar are vividly conveyed in a text that offers the context in which comparative law “came of age” as a mature academic discipline. The work of Schlesinger is alive in “The Common Core of European Private Law” where he served as an honorary editor. This book contains a foreword by Professor Ugo Mattei, who was a student of Schlesinger’s and later his successor on the Chair of Comparative Law at the University of California, Hastings College of the Law.

RUDOLF B. SCHLESINGER has been a towering figure of comparative jurisprudence whose influence has been global. A German refugee scholar, he was educated at Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich and Columbia University and was a professor at Cornell Law School (1948-1975) and University of California, Hastings College of the Law (1975-1996). The “factual approach” he developed in the early 1960s at the Cornell seminars, and the book Comparative Law, that reached its 7th edition, have set the methodological standards of the discipline worldwide.

Table of Contents

Table of contents and preliminary pages (p. 0)

Chapter I. My Father and his Family (p. 1)

Chapter II. My Mother and her Family (p. 5)

Chapter III. My Parents and My Own Childhood (p. 9)

Chapter IV. The Years at the Gymnasium (p. 17)

Chapter V. Law Study in Europe (p. 33)

Chapter VI. Work as a Legal Apprentice – Interrupted by the Nazis’ Rise to Power (p. 41)

Chapter VII. House Counsel of a Private Bank in Nazi Germany (p. 51)

Chapter VIII. Face to Face with Nazi Terror (p. 61)

Chapter IX. A New Beginning (p. 71)

Chapter X. Going Back to School (p. 75)

Chapter XI. Entering into Married Life and Re-Entering the Profession (p. 85)

Chapter XII. Teaching Law at Cornell (p. 105)

About the series:

The Common Core of European Private Law

Launched in 1993, The Common Core of European Private Law is the oldest ongoing collective comparative law effort in Europe. Putting cases at their heart, each book in this series analyses a selected legal topic on the basis of real and fictional facts across different European jurisdictions. The likely outcome of the decision and its underlying legal rules are clearly set out case by case and jurisdiction by jurisdiction. In addition, the national reporters put the respective legal rules into the relevant cultural context. In this way, the collaborative effort brings not only the inner structures of national laws in Europe to the fore, but also the different cultural sensitivities forging their development in the first place. It allows a reliable map of what is different and what is common in the various private laws across Europe to be drawn, without any specific agenda for or against the further harmonisation of private law in Europe. The series comprises more than 20 volumes of work of more than 300 academics and is an invaluable tool to understand private law across Europe.

General Editors
Mauro Bussani, University of Trieste (Italy) – University of Macao (People’s Republic of China)
Ugo Mattei, University of Turin (Italy) – University of California, Hastings College of Law (USA)

Scientific Board
Aurelia L.B. Colombi Ciacchi, University of Groningen (the Netherlands)
Anna di Robilant, Boston University (USA)
Francesca Fiorentini, University of Trieste (Italy)
Antonio Gambaro (Emeritus), State University of Milan (Italy)
James Russell Gordley, Tulane University (USA)
Marta Infantino, University of Trieste (Italy)
Alessandra Quarta, University of Turin (Italy)
Mathias Reimann, University of Michigan (USA)
María Elena Sánchez Jordán, University of La Laguna (Tenerife, Spain)
Filippo Valguarnera, Stockholm University (Sweden)
Franz Werro, University of Fribourg (Switzerland) – Georgetown University Law Center (USA)

More about this series