Ewa Kozerska, Tomasz Scheffler

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.21697/zp.2011.11.4.10


Edward Muszalski’s Idea of National Private Law

The paper presents the views of Polish lawyer Edward Muszalski on the state of private law in Europe and Poland of the interwar period and his proposals for changes. Muszalski assumed that the law was shaped by two schools of thought : liberal and socialist. In the 18th and 19th century the liberal school dominated, the result of which was the creation of the Napoleonic Code and the BGB. In the 19th century, socialism also influenced the law, which resulted in the creation of labor legislation and trade unions. In the 20th century, the bad qualities of both schools came together in the law of the Soviet Union. However it was possible to combine the good qualities of liberal and socialist law by assuming that the fundamental category of private law is the nation. According to Muszalski, national private law assumes, among others, the dominance of common law over statues, limitation of property rights, strengthening of family stability, limiting rights of will making and abandoning the principle of the will of the parties as the basis for interpreting contracts. Attempts to create national private law were made in Germany under the rule of Hitler and in Italy under the rule of Mussolini. However in both cases full-range law reforms failed, and in both countries private law remains liberal.

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