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Negligence is "conduct which falls below the standard established by law for the protection of others against unreasonable risk of harm." And this standard of conduct is ordinarily measured by what the reasonably prudent man would do under the circumstances. As everyone knows this reasonable man is a creature of the law's imagination: the present article will seek to examine the qualities with which the law endows its creature, under varying circumstances. This of course is in part the old inquiry whether negligence is subjective or objective. But the inquiry has too often been pursued without paying enough attention to the compensation of accident victims, which is one of the avowed objectives of tort law even under the fault principle. Moreover the practical effects of letting the jury apply the standard in most cases have not always had the attention they deserve.

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The Qualities of the Reasonable Man in Negligence Cases, 16 Mo. L. Rev. 1 (1951)

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