Beneficial Professor of Law
Educated at Princeton, Oxford and Columbia Law School, Charles Fried, the Beneficial Professor of Law, has been teaching at Harvard Law School since 1961. He was Solicitor General of the United States, 1985-89, and an Associate Justice of the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts, 1995-99. His scholarly and teaching interests have been moved by the connection between normative theory and the concrete institutions of public and private law. During his career at Harvard he has taught Criminal Law, Commercial Law, Roman Law, Torts, Contracts, Labor Law, Constitutional Law and Federal Courts, Appellate and Supreme Court Advocacy. The author of many books and articles, his Anatomy of Values (1970), Right and Wrong (1978), and Modern Liberty (2006) develop themes in moral and political philosophy with applications to law. Contract as Promise (1980), Making Tort Law (2003, with David Rosenberg) and Saying What the Law Is: The Constitution in the Supreme Court (2004) are fundamental inquiries into broad legal institutions. Order & Law: Arguing the Reagan Revolution (1991) discusses major themes developed in Fried’s time as Solicitor General. In recent years Fried has taught Constitutional Law and Contracts. During his time as a teacher he has also argued a number of major cases in state and federal courts, most notably Daubert v. Merrell Dow Pharmaceuticals, in which the Supreme Court established the standards for the use of expert and scientific evidence in federal courts.
FavoriteCharles Fried, Contract As Promise: A Theory of Contractual Obligation (Oxford Univ. Press 2d ed. 2015).
FavoriteCharles Fried & Gregory Fried, Because It Is Wrong: Torture, Privacy and Presidential Power in the Age of Terror (W.W. Norton & Co. 2010).
FavoriteCharles Fried, Modern Liberty: And the Limits of Government (W.W. Norton & Co. 2007).
- Charles Fried, The Reactionary Court, N.Y. Rev. (Nov. 24, 2022).
- Charles Fried & Gregory Fried, Terror, emergencies, drastic conditions and democratic constitutionalism, VerfBlog (Mar. 9, 2022).