Washington Law Review


Harry M. Cross


It is impossible to appraise the whole of this treatise, which will include five volumes, with only the first being published, but there are sufficient clues in the published volume to indicate the quality of the whole work. This is a modern book: witness, for example, the discussion of Oyama v. California, 332 U.S. 633 (1948) in paragraph 106 on page 393. In the preface Professor Powell states the three guiding stresses in his study to be upon (1) integration of the whole subject, (2) current problems in the perspective of the trends of evolution, and (3) the tremendous importance of the statutes. The emphasis on the cases of the last twenty-five years and current statutes carries inherently a danger of relatively short usefulness for the whole treatise, and some who insist that a purely historical approach to property law problems can alone give the sound answer might insist that the emphasis vitiates the book's value. Neither short usefulness nor small utility can properly be charged to this first volume nor probably to the whole treatise when it appears. The author recognizes that a sound analysis of present law depends on a familiarity with its historical developments and in this perspective he proposes to use the recent decisions and current statutes.

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