Document Type



Contributory Negligence and Proximate Cause, 6 North Carolina Law Review 3 (1927)


The attempt which common law courts have made to resolve
every major problem of legal liability in tort into terms of causal
relation marks the most glaring and persistent fallacy in tort law.
Succeeding generations of judges continue this attempt without
apparent protest. The legal mind indicates its kinship with the
common mind in no more certain way than by rejecting the simplest
truth for some complex superstructure of metaphysics. Of all the
problems of the law of torts the problem of causal relation is the
simplest, but it has become so enmeshed in meaningless terminology
that there is little hope for its rationalization. Within the last half
century with rare exception has any court given the problem its
proper place in determining responsibility for tortious wrongs

Date of Authorship for this Version



tort law, causal relation, negligence