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Monopoly or reward? The origin of copyright and authorship in England, France and China and a new criticism of intellectual property

Shao, K. (2011) Monopoly or reward? The origin of copyright and authorship in England, France and China and a new criticism of intellectual property. Hong Kong Law Journal, 41 (Part 3). pp. 731-757.

Abstract

This paper comparatively examines the history of copyright and authorship in China, France and England. It argues that the copyright history of imperial China and pre-1520 France reveals a phenomenon whereby copyright was viewed more as a means for rewarding authors, publishers and investors than monopoly or property. It also argues that authorship, which was highly regarded in China's literary tradition, was linked not to proprietorship but to originality and rewarding it. The paper concludes that viewing reward as the core basis for copyright challenges the absolute concept of property right ownership and opens the door to more flexible solutions that may better encourage creativity.

Publication Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation: School of Law
Publisher: Hong Kong Law Journal Ltd.
Copyright: © The Author
Publishers Website: http://www.hklj.com/
URI: http://researchrepository.murdoch.edu.au/id/eprint/7839
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