(From the Center of Civil Law Studies, Paul M. Hebert Law Center, Newsletter, January 2008, No. 5)
In 2008, the LSU Paul M. Hebert Law Center commemorates the Bicentennial of the Louisiana Civil Code, marking the confirmed survival of the civil law in Louisiana after the 1803 Purchase. This was the first civil code, anywhere in the world, to be drafted in the wake of the Napoleonic codification. It still has a significant influence not only in the United States but also in Quebec, Latin America, and Spain.
The Civil Code of 1808 will be published online in May 2008, both in the original French and English translation, with the notes made by the drafters at the time. An added search function will make it an easily researchable source. The Code will be accessible to scholars, students, practitioners, and laymen alike, all over the world, whether their interest is law or culture in all its possible dimensions.
The unveiling of this historic project will occur during the Journées Capitant on Law and Culture, to take place in Baton Rouge and New Orleans from May 18th through May 23rd. This conference will be held in French by the Association Capitant des amis de la culture juridique française, and will attract more than one hundred participants from French speaking countries all around the world. Support has been obtained both for the publication of the Louisiana Civil Code online and the organization of the events from the Organisation internationale de la francophonie, and the World Organization of French Speaking Countries. The Consulate of France in New Orleans and the Ministry of Cooperation in Paris are also monitoring the event.