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Some commentators have questioned whether contracts of adhesion can justifiably be enforced at all under traditional contract theory because the adhering party generally enters into them without manifesting knowing and voluntary consent to all their terms. See, e. g., Rakoff, Contracts of Adhesion: An Essay in Reconstruction, 96 Harv.L.Rev. 1173, 1179-1180 (1983); Slawson, Mass Contracts: Lawful Fraud in California, 48 S.Cal.L.Rev. 1, 1213 (1974); K. Llewellyn, The Common Law Tradition 370-371 (1960). 


The common law, recognizing that standardized form contracts account for a significant portion of all commercial agreements, has taken a less extreme position, and instead subjects terms in contracts of adhesion to scrutiny for reasonableness. Judge J. Skelly Wright set out the state of the law succinctly in Williams v. Walker-Thomas Furniture Co., 121 U.S. App. D.C. 315, 319-320, 350 F.2d 445, 449-450 (1965) (footnotes omitted): 'Ordinarily, one who signs an agreement without full knowledge of its terms might be held to assume the risk that he has entered a one-sided bargain. But when a party of little bargaining power, and hence little real choice, signs a commercially unreasonable contract with little or no knowledge of its terms, it is hardly likely that his ...

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