Article Title

Coase’s Parable

Publication Date


Document Type



Some stories have heroes and villains. Others involve a voyage, a quest, or a monster to be defeated. The law is no exception. Most legal stories are about identifying wrongdoers and vindicating the rights of victims, and this standard victim-wrongdoer model not only informs recent developments in legal scholarship, such as feminist jurisprudence or critical race theory; it also informs our classical liberal tradition.5 But what if harms are reciprocal or jointly caused? In other words, what if victims are just as responsible as wrongdoers for their plight?