Document Type



Privacy and Content Over Time: The Role of Agreement in Fourth Amendment Analysis, 54 William & Mary Law Review 1693 (2013)


Like many legal systems around the world, the American system

protects the "right to privacy," or, as Samuel Warren and Louis

Brandeis famously put it, the "right to be let alone."^ Although

Warren and Brandeis's formulation has profoundly influenced

privacy law, a moment of thought reveals that most of us do not

wish to be entirely "let alone." An individual wholly surrounded by

a cocoon of solitude—for instance, the Russian mathematician who

declined the equivalent of a Nobel Prize because he preferred to

remain secluded in his mother's St. Petersburg home—is a rarity

(and usually at least somewhat of an oddity). Although we do not

want our homes or property to be open for inspection at all times,

we usually want the police to be able to come in and take a look

when we have been victims of a burglary.

Date of Authorship for this Version


Included in

Law Commons