A-23/18 Private property in the context of community

The dominant philosophy of private land ownership—that private property exists for the benefit of its owner and that use and ownership should be determined by market forces—is not the only philosophy in the American tradition. Classical republicanism's proprietarian perspective was equally in favor of private property, but held that private property exists for the benefit of society. This article begins by presenting the proprietarian view of private property rights, drawing on the legal scholarship where this perspective has been revived. Next, I use the case of contemporary land reform in Scotland to exemplify the rationale for this perspective. Lastly, I attempt to import the lessons of Scottish land reformers without importing their model, instead considering ways in which private land ownership might be embedded in non‐market institutions in the United States. American Journal of Economics and Sociology 77(1): 125-148

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