The essay argues for the compatibility between private law and the commons. In order to do so, it proposes an archeology of modern private law, which traces both the emergence of what will be called “modern topology” and the historical transformation of civil law into what we still know as private law. Private law is considered to be a product of modern legal theory which is radically tied with public law. The two are meant to have the very same logical form—individuality—which was the premise for the social relation of capital to be established. The pivot of this legal maneuver—which ended up with the exclusion of the commons from the realm of both private and public law—was the theory of subjective rights. To dismantle this construction, the essay proposes a critique of subjective rights as well as a trans-subjective approach to private law.

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