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It is with a great deal of excitement ( and with thanks to so many contributing colleagues and collaborators over the years ) that we are able to present to the public for the first time a newly published work by one of the great originators of modem legal history and law and society scholarship-James Willard Hurst. Hurst published his last two books, Law and Markets in United States History and Dealing with Statutes, in 1982. And, fittingly, he published his last substantive article--.-a very short comment on "The Use of Case Histories"-in the Wisconsin Law Review in 1992. In the latter, Hurst took one final parting shot at traditional legal scholarship focused on "tales of conspicuous political or constitutional controversies" as well as conventional legal histories that "tell only of great events and star actors." As a pioneer of both the "Wisconsin school" of law and society and the Wisconsin monographic tradition in legal history research, Hurst's interests were different. He aimed instead at the larger questions and the deeper causation reflected in the analytical categories that pervaded his mature work: sequence and context, particularity and generality, structures and functions, values and interests, and drift and direction.


Originally published as Ard, BJ and William J. Novak. "Willard Hurst's Unpublished Manuscript on Law, Technology, and Regulation." Foreword to Wisconsin Law Review 2022, no. 3 (2022): 443-462.