Book Review: U.S. Antitrust Law and Enforcement: A Practice Introduction

Broder, Douglas.  2010.  “U.S. Antitrust Law and Enforcement: A Practice Introduction.”  New York: Oxford University Press.  312 Pages.  $185.00.

In the forward to Douglas Broder’s introductory text “U.S. Antitrust Law and Enforcement”  he writes that there is a “need for a one-volume book, written in plain English and readable in a sitting (admittedly a fairly long one), that surveys and categorizes the United States antitrust laws and the cases interpreting them, describes how and by whom these laws are enforced, and introduces the reader to the practice of antitrust law.”

The book consists of roughly 200 pages of text broken up over eight chapters: (1) Overview and History of U.S. Antitrust Enforcement; (2) Federal Antitrust Statutes; (3) Agreements in Restraint of Trade–Sherman Act, Section 1; (4) Monopolization and Attempted Monopolization–Sherman Act, Section 2; (5) Mergers, Acquisitions, and Joint Ventures–Clayton Act, Section 7; (6) Premerger Notification–The Hart-Scott-Rodino Act; (7) Price Discrimination–The Robinson-Patman Act; (8) Antitrust Enforcement.  In addition, it includes over 100 pages of Appendix materials, which includes a very basic description of the U.S. federal legal system, common law, and case procedure in federal courts.  There is also an extensive glossary of antitrust and other legal terms and a table of cases.

Broder’s prose is simple and his summaries of antitrust law are clear.  He has accomplished what he set out to do, which was to provide an introductory text that is accessible for law students, attorneys, and I would also add undergraduates and international students.  In fact, antitrust law is so simplified in this text that I believe the target audience should be international students who come to the U.S. to study for an LLM.  Among other things, the appendix includes very brief summaries of such broad topics as the bill of rights, the constitution, and the three branches of government.  All 1L’s will learn about these topics in far greater detail during their constitutional law course, so the addition to this text of these topics cannot be for their benefit.  However, students from foreign countries studying for their LLM and who have had none or very little exposure to the U.S. legal system would benefit from the straightforward summary and facts provided in the appendix.  The glossary of antitrust terms is filled with hundreds of defined terms that is helpful for JDs, LLMs, and beginning practitioners.

One final note, two weeks after I first commenced writing this review I was walking through the Harvard Law School Library’s reading room when I noticed someone reading “U.S. Antitrust Law and Enforcement: A Practice Introduction.”  I walked up to him and I told him that I was writing a review of this book and I wanted to know what he thought of it.  He was a visiting scholar from Germany and he needed an introductory text on antitrust law.  He said that the book was perfect for him as he knew very little about antitrust law.   So, at $185 this book is expensive but I would recommend it highly to any library with a sizeable international student body.

George Taoultsides

Research Librarian and Student Services Coordinator

Harvard Law School Library

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September 2010

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