Legal studies as a promise of equality

Vol. 329 of the Studien zur europäischen Rechtsgeschichte has been published

June 28, 2021

In the course of Jewish emancipation in Germany from the 18th century to the First World War, many Jewish students chose to study law. What did these young scholars of 1850, 1880 or 1910 think about when it came to their professional future? Should they aim for success in the civil service, in the judiciary, or as an advocate, and what obstacles had to be overcome on the way to becoming a university lecturer? The contributions to this anthology shed light on which career paths were chosen within the field of law. They show that a mixture of influences from parents and education, reactions to academic constraints, an idealistic spirit of departure into an opening world of scholarship and curiosity about »modern« topics were decisive. The basic approach of those three or so generations was liberal and international; they were attracted by the historical subjects, legal theory, comparative law and international law, as well as commercial law and company law, and not least by the new labour and social law. Because the study of law contained a liberal promise of equality, the contributions to this volume can also be read as preliminary studies in an intertwined history of Jewish emancipation and the emergence of the secular rule of law in Germany between 1850 and 1933.

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