October 16, 2011

First entry – Week 2

Having a look on the development of law in Europe impresses upon us a historical reflection of this topic. From the beginning of a 'European common law' in the form of the 'ius commune' until nowadays with the law of the European Union, this idea has come a long way. Particularly interesting for me was one expression in the first week's reading: 'Looking back from the future, there may be a generation which will see our time just as a little interruption in the tradition of a European common law.' Will it be like this? I'm not quite convinced yet. The crucial question may be how we define our tradition of a 'common law'. Another quote in the first week's reading was: 'We may have had a common legal tradition with the ius commune but it hasn't been a common code'. If this would be our tradition which may be readopted in the future, is the idea of a European Common Civil Code perhaps just illusory? If Europe hadn't had a common code in times when we had a common work language -Latin- is it realistic to establish a common code in times of the babel of languages in Brussels? Perhaps we should more likely pursuit to revisit our common 'legal culture'. The CFR and the DCFR have so far stressed the common legal principles in European law systems. Should we tune in to a Directive, which imposes to implement common legal principles? Or, should we go after a unified legal education and training all over Europe? At the moment, and in my opinion also in the future cultural differences in Europe seem to impede a common civil law codification. But we could certainly bethink ourselves of our common legal tradition. This should be a step in the right direction!

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