Dalhousie Law Journal


Anglo-American legal system, Charles Darwin, theory of evolution, law, analogous relationship, death of permanence, legal system, Alvin Toffler


One general perspective from which to view the Anglo-American legal system shared by Canada is that proposed by Charles Darwin to explain the origin and diversity of biologically distinct species. Darwin's theory of evolution places emphasis upon the adjustment or adaptation over time of biological characteristics to environmental factors by the selection of genetically determined features enabling the most suited to their surroundings to better thrive - the so-called "survival of the fittest".' Law might usefully be thought of as bearing an analogous relationship to the social environment in which it exists and must operate. As this milieu for various reasons inevitably undergoes a process of change, a process dramatically popularized as the "death of permanence" by Alvin Toffler2 , so must the legal system in response adapt itself to the needs dictated by current conditions.