Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Bracha on "The Intellectual Origins of American Intellectual Property, 1790–1909"

New from Cambridge University Press: Owning Ideas: The Intellectual Origins of American Intellectual Property, 1790–1909, by Oren Bracha (University of Texas, Austin). A description from the Press:
Owning Ideas is a comprehensive account of the emergence of the concept of intellectual property in the United States during the long nineteenth century. In the modern information era, intellectual property has become a central economic and cultural phenomenon and an important lever for allocating wealth and power. This book uncovers the intellectual origins of this modern concept of private property in ideas through a close study of its emergence within the two most important areas of this field: patent and copyright. By placing the development of legal concepts within their social context, this study reconstructs the radical transformation of the idea. Our modern notion of owning ideas, it argues, came into being when the ideals of eighteenth-century possessive individualism at the heart of early patent and copyright were subjected to the forces and ideology of late-nineteenth-century corporate liberalism.
Advance praise:
"This book is a superb study of the transformation of American copyright and patent doctrine in the nineteenth century. Deeply researched, finely nuanced and lucidly presented. Owning Ideas will be read by literary scholars, cultural historians, Americanists generally and scholars in communications and media departments as well as by legal scholars. It will quickly become a classic." -- Mark Rose

"Building on the foundation established by Rose and Deazley in their histories of the invention of copyright in the 18th century, Bracha’s brilliant intellectual history explains how the fundamental components of parents and copyright - authorship, object of protection and scope - were transformed over the 19th century. With amazing analytical clarity, as well as wonderful depth, Owning Ideas, is the first sophisticated account of the development of the constitutive assumptions of modern American intellectual property law." -- Lionel Bently
More information is available here.