HISTORY OF CODIFICATIONS
Learning outcomes of the course unit
Aim of this course is to lead students to:
- acquire basic notions concerning the phenomenon of codification and its evolution between the 18th and the 20th century;
- historicize the idea of Code, highlighting its ideological and political preconditions and comparing it both with the pre-existing ius commune system and with legal systems that knew a different evolution, without experiencing the codification of law;
- contextualize the codification process in the legal history of various national and regional States, through the study of the different codifications produced in various parts of Europe, as well as in preunitarian Italian States
- recognize Codes as a common language, shared among the different legal systems of continental Europe
- elaborate critical thinking on the present and the future of the idea of codification at a global level
there is no formal prerequisite
Course contents summary
Aim of this course is to describe the phenomenon of Codifications as a distinctive feature of the juridical system of continental Europe.
After describing the ius commune system in its main traits, mentioning its peculiarities and illustrating the main reasons for its crisis, we’ll introduce the concepts of collection and of consolidation of legislative (and judicial) sources: the main examples produced in Italy and in the rest of Europe will be taken into consideration.
We will later discuss the cultural premises of the idea of codification, focusing on the movements of Jusnaturalism and of juridical Illuminism. The political consequences of these movements will be later considered, with reference both to Enlightened Absolutism and to the French Revolution.
We’ll later discuss the long efforts to produce a civil Code in revolutionary and post-revolutionary France, focusing also on the alternative model of the Austrian ABGB. We’ll then examine the anti-codification movement that established itself in Germany at the beginning of the 19th century, in the cultural enviornment of Romanticism.
The various codifications of the pre-unitarian States of the Italian peninsula will be later discussed, focusing on the their interaction with the different European models. Special attention will of course be given to the Codes of the Duchy of Parme, whose peculiarities will be highlighted.
After describing the conclusion of the codification dispute in Germany, with the enactment of the German civil Code (BGB), we will take into consideration the other Codes introduced at the beginning of the 20th century: the Swiss civil Code and the Codex iuris canonici of the 20th century. We’ll then discuss the relationship between the Codification of law and the totalitaristic regimes of the 20th century.
Our last topic will be the diffusion of the different models of Code at a planetary level.
- Adriano Cavanna, Storia del diritto moderno in Europa. Le fonti e il pensiero giuridico, vol. II, Milano, Giuffré 2005, pp. 14-291; 553-617
The course is organized with frontal classes, given exclusively online, in synchronous mode, through Microsoft teams, with the aid of power point presentations.
The videos of the single lessions will be updloaded on Elly. The slides of each lesson will be downloadable from the same platform.
As long as student reception will not be possible in person, it is possible to arrange via mail videomeetings via Teams.
Assessment methods and criteria
oral exam with a pre-determined list of questions. The exam will consist in three questions on specific topics discussed during our lessons. Each answer will be evaluated on a scale from 0 to 10, assessing the possess of the fundamental notions of this subject, the reasoning and contextualizing abilities and the property of language of each student. The final mark will be given in thirtieths.
As long as the current pandemic situation will last, exams will be done in mixed mode (that is, in presence, but with the possibility for students to ask to be tested online) or exclusively online. The selected mode will be communicated via Esse3 well in advance before the exams