Trade Marks and Brands: An Interdisciplinary Critique


Trade Marks and Brands: An Interdisciplinary Critique


Publication Date



Developments in trade marks law have called into question a variety of basic features, as well as bolder extensions, of legal protection. Other disciplines can help us think about fundamental issues such as: what is a trade mark? What does it do? What should be the scope of its protection? This volume assembles essays examining trade marks and brands from a multiplicity of fields: from business history, marketing, linguistics, legal history, philosophy, sociology and geography. Each chapter pairs lawyers' and non-lawyers' perspectives, so that each commentator addresses and critiques his or her counterpart's analysis. The perspectives of non-legal fields are intended to enrich legal academics' and practitioners' reflections about trade marks, and to expose lawyers, judges and policy-makers to ideas, concepts and methods that could prove to be of particular importance in the development of positive law.

  • The first interdisciplinary discussion of trade marks and brands
  • Each chapter matches a lawyer with a contributor from another discipline, ensuring that the non-lawyers have a good understanding of legal technicalities, and that the insights from different disciplines for law are assessed by legal commentators
  • Extensive bibliography offers a basis for future research


Intellectual Property Law | International Law | Law




Cambridge University Press


New York, NY


“The past two decades have witnessed an explosion of research into the very ontological foundations of trade mark law. Few books however have tried to venture systematically into the heart of the legal beast to construct a truly comprehensive view of what the nature and function of trade marks are and the scope of their legal protection as Trade Marks and Brands: An Interdisciplinary Critique does. The book draws on a number of aspects of trade mark law, namely legal and business history, marketing, linguistics, philosophy, sociology and geography, giving different flavours to the law. The originality of the book lies not only in the fact that it brings these different aspects together, but also in allowing each commentator to address and critique their counterpart's analysis. The book is primarily aimed at lawyers, non-lawyers and policy-makers and assumes that the reader is already up to speed on the subject.”
Book Reviews

“The editor's claim in the preface of the uniqueness of this work, on the basis of the broad, inter-related range of contributions, is largely justified. Throughout this volume, contributors bear in mind that legislation is inevitably behind constantly-evolving developments and draw readers into considering the challenges ahead. This work will no doubt be useful to scholars and students as well as to non-specialists wishing to broaden their knowledge on the subject.”
World Intellectual Property Organisation Magazine


Also available as an eBook through the Columbia University Libraries.

Trade Marks and Brands: An Interdisciplinary Critique

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