Monday, December 2, 2019

Wildlife Law

Eric T. Freyfogle, Dale D. Goble, and Todd A. Wildermuth, Wildlife Law: A Primer (Island Press, 2019).

The new edition of Wildlife Law by three leading experts has been thoroughly updated to provide straightforward explanations of United States wildlife legal issues that have become more complicated than ever. New chapters tackle twenty-first-century quandaries such as canned hunting, private wildlife reserves and game ranches, the increased prominence of nuisance species, and an expanded discussion of the Endangered Species Act. It is an essential reference for those needing a thorough grounding in basic legal concepts governing wildlife management in the United States.
-Publisher's Description

The New Stock Market

Merritt B. Fox, Lawrence R. Glosten, and Gabriel V. Rauterberg, The New Stock Market: Law, Economics, and Policy (Columbia University Press, 2019).

The New Stock Market offers a comprehensive new look at how these markets work, how they fail, and how they should be regulated. Merritt B. Fox, Lawrence R. Glosten, and Gabriel V. Rauterberg describe stock markets' institutions and regulatory architecture. They draw on the information paradigm of microstructure economics to highlight the crucial role of information asymmetries and adverse selection in explaining market behavior, while examining a wide variety of developments in market practices and participants.
-Publisher's Description

The Company They Keep

Neal Devins and Lawrence Baum, The Company They Keep: How Partisan Divisions Came to the Supreme Court (Oxford University Press, 2019).

As the eminent law and politics scholars Neal Devins and Lawrence Baum show in The Company They Keep, justices today are reacting far more to subtle social forces in their own elite legal world than to pressure from the other branches of government or mass public opinion. In particular, the authors draw from social psychology research to show why Justices are apt to follow the lead of the elite social networks that they are a part of.
-Publisher's Description

Drugs, Money, and Secret Handshakes

Robin Feldman, Drugs, Money, and Secret Handshakes: The Unstoppable Growth of Prescription Drug Prices (Cambridge University Press, 2019).
In the warped world of prescription drug pricing, generic drugs can cost more than branded ones, old drugs can be relaunched at astronomical prices, and low-cost options are shut out of the market. In Drugs, Money, and Secret Handshakes, Robin Feldman shines a light into the dark corners of the pharmaceutical industry to expose a web of shadowy deals in which higher-priced drugs receive favorable treatment and patients are channeled toward the most expensive medicines. At the center of this web are the highly secretive middle players who establish coverage levels for patients and negotiate with drug companies. By offering lucrative payments to these middle players (as well as to doctors and hospitals), drug companies ensure than inexpensive drugs never gain traction. This system of perverse incentives has delivered the kind of exorbitant drug prices - and profits - that everyone loves except for those who pay the bills.
-Publisher's Description

Monday, November 18, 2019

The Case for an International Court of Civil Justice

Maya Steinitz, The Case for an International Court of Civil Justice (Cambridge University Press, 2019).
When multinational corporations cause mass harms to lives, livelihoods, and the environment in developing countries, it is nearly impossible for victims to find a court that can and will issue an enforceable judgment. In this work, Professor Maya Steinitz presents a detailed rationale for the creation of an International Court of Civil Justice (ICCJ) to hear such transnational mass tort cases. The world's legal systems were not designed to solve these kinds of complex transnational disputes, and the absence of mechanisms to ensure coordination means that victims try, but fail, to find justice in country after country, court after court. The Case for an International Court of Civil Justice explains how the ICCJ would provide victims with access to justice and corporate defendants with a non-corrupt forum and an end to the cost and uncertainty of unending litigation -- more efficiently resolving the most complicated types of civil litigation.
-Publisher's Description

Adversarial Legalism

Robert A. Kagan, Adversarial Legalism: The American Way of Law (Harvard University Press, 2019).
In the first edition of this groundbreaking book, Robert Kagan explained why American is much more adversarial -- likely to rely on legal threats and lawsuits -- than other economically advanced countries, with more prescriptive laws, more costly adjudications, and more severe penalties. This updated edition also addresses the rise of the conservative legal movement and anti-statism in the Republican party, which have put in sharp relief the virtues of adversarial legalism in its ability to empower citizens, lawyers, and judges to mount challenges to the arbitrary or unlawful exercise of government authority.
-Publisher's Description

The Fire Is upon Us

Nicholas Buccola, The Fire Is upon Us: James Baldwin, William F. Buckley Jr., and the Debate Over Race in America (Princeton University Press, 2019).
On February 18, 1965, an overflowing crowd packed the Cambridge Union in Cambridge, England, to witness a historic televised debate between James Baldwin, the leading literary voice of the civil rights movement, and William F. Buckley Jr., a fierce critic of the movement and America's most influential conservative intellect.
Nicholas Buccola's The Fire Is upon Us is the first book to tell the full story of the event, the radically different paths that led Baldwin and Buckley to it, the controversies that followed, and how the debate and the decades-long clash between the men continues to illuminate America's racial divide today.
-Publisher's Description

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Landscape Protection in International Law

Amy Strecker, Landscape Protection in International Law (Oxford University Press, 2018).

How does international law, which deals for the most part with universality, deal with something so region-specific and particular as landscape? What is the legal conception of landscape and what are the various roles played by international law in its protection? Amy Strecker assesses the institutional framework for landscape protection, analyses  the interplay between landscape and human rights, and links the etymology and theory of landscape with its articulation in law.
-Publisher's Description

The Obligation Dilemma

Ishtiyaque Haji, The Obligation Dilemma (Oxford University Press, 2019).
Can you be morally obligated to do something? To renowned philosopher Ishtiyaque Haji, the answer is guardedly no. Regardless of whether determinism is true, he argues, there is a prima facie plausibility that there are no moral obligations. Powerfully and efficiently, Haji develops a conclusion that has major implications for how we conceive issues in moral responsibility and free will. The book develops the obligation dilemma as clearly as possible. The next step will be for further sustained philosophical work to solve it, assuming it can be resolved, inspired by Haji.
-Publisher's Description

The Ambivalence of Good

Jan Eckel, The Ambivalence of Good: Human Rights in International Politics Since the 1940s (Oxford University Press, 2019).
The Ambivalence of Good examines the genesis and evolution of international human rights politics since the 1940s. Focusing on key developments such as the shaping of the UN human rights system, decolonization, the rise of Amnesty International, the campaigns against the Pinochet dictatorship, the moral politics of Western governments, and dissidence in Eastern Europe, the book traces how human rights profoundly, if subtly, transformed global affairs.
-Publisher's Description

Wednesday, November 6, 2019

Justice Blindfolded

Adriano Prosperi, Justice Blindfolded: The Historical Course of an Image (Brill, 2018).
Justice Blindfolded gives an overview of the history of "justice" and its iconography through the centuries. Justice has been portrayed as a woman with scales, or holding a sword, or, since the fifteenth century, with her eyes bandaged. This last symbol contains the idea that justice is both impartial and blind, reminding indirectly of the bandaged Christ on
the cross, a central figure in the Christian idea of fairness and forgiveness.
-Publisher's Description

Gender War

Solange Mouthaan and Olga Jurasz, Gender War: International and Transitional Justice Perspectives (Intersentia, 2019).
This book explores and challenges common assumptions about gender, conflict, and post-conflict situations. It critically examines the gendered aspects of international and transitional justice processes by subverting traditional understandings of how wars are waged, the power dynamics involved, and the experiences of victims. The book also highlights the gendered stereotypes that underpin the (mis)perceptions about gender and war in order to reveal the multi-dimensional nature of modern conflicts and their aftermaths.
-Publisher's Description

Tuesday, November 5, 2019

The International Rule of Law: Rise or Decline?

Heike Krieger, Georg Nolte and Andreas Zimmermann, The International Rule of Law: Rise or Decline? (Oxford University Press, 2019).
In this book distinguished scholars reflect on how to approach these questions from historical, system-oriented, and actor-centred perspectives. The contributions engage, inter alia, with the rise of European international law since the seventeenth century, compliance as an indicator for the state of international law, informal law-making in times of populism, the influence of the BRICS states and non-state actors on international law, international law's contribution to global justice, the contestation of value-based norms, and the international rule of law in light of legitimacy claims. In a time of global instability, this books makes an important contribution to our understanding of the resilience of the international rule of law.
-Publisher's Description


Wendy Wagner with Will Walker, Incomprehensible!: A Study of How Our Legal System Encourages Incomprehensibility, Why It Matters, and What We Can Do About It (Cambridge University Press, 2019).

Incomprehensible! argues that surrendering to incomprehensibility is a bad mistake. Drawing together evidence from diverse fields such as consumer protection, financial regulation, patents, chemical control, and administrative and legislative process, this book identifies a number of important legal programs that are built on the foundational assumption that "more information is better." Each of these legal processes has been designed in ways that ignore the imperative of meaningful communication. To rectify this systemic problem, the law must be re-designed to pay careful attention to the problem of incomprehensibility.
-Publisher's Description

Tuesday, October 8, 2019

Smart Surveillance: How to Interpret the Fourth Amendment in the Twenty-First Century

Ric Simmons, Smart Surveillance: How to Interpret the Fourth Amendment in the Twenty-First Century (Cambridge University Press, 2019).

Over the last decade, law enforcement agencies have engaged in increasingly intrusive surveillance methods, from location tracking on cell phones to reading metadata off of e-mails. As a result, many believe we are heading towards an omniscient surveillance state and irrevocable damage to our privacy rights. In Smart Surveillance, Ric Simmons challenges this conventional wisdom by taking a broader look at the effect of new technologies and privacy, arguing that advances in technology can enhance our privacy and our security at the same time. Rather than focusing exclusively on the rise of invasive surveillance technologies, Simmons proposes a fundamentally new method of evaluating government searches -- based on quantification, transparency, and efficiency -- resulting in a legal regime that can adapt as technology and society change.
-Publisher's Description

Tuesday, October 1, 2019

Contributing Negligence in the Twenty-First Century

James Goudkamp & Donal Nolan, Contributing Negligence in the Twenty-First Century (Oxford University Press, 2019).

Despite the centrality of the contributory negligence doctrine in practice, almost nothing is known about how it functions in reality. The authors, seeking to fill this deficit in understanding, have undertaken a wide-ranging empirical study of how the doctrine is handled by the courts. They report their methodology and findings in this volume, framing their discussion within the law of contributory negligence.

The study is based on 572 first instance decisions on contributory negligence from across the United Kingdom decided between 2000 and 2016, and 129 appellate decisions handed down in the same period. The analysis considers the operation of the contributory negligence doctrine at first instance and on appeal, and in a range of contextual settings, including road accidents, accidents at work, and professional negligence claims. The authors also consider how the study can be used to inform future developments in this area of law. Substantial appendices set out the key data on which the book is based, enabling academics to utilize the dataset in their own research and allowing practitioners to compare their cases easily with previously decided claims.
-Publisher's Description

Monday, September 30, 2019

The Code of Capital: How the Law Creates Wealth and Inequality

Katharina Pistor, The Code of Capital: How the Law Creates Wealth and Inequality (Princeton University Press, 2019).

Capital is the defining feature of modern economies, yet most people have no idea where it actually comes from. What is it, exactly, that transforms mere wealth into an asset that automatically creates more wealth? The Code of Capital explains how capital is created behind closed doors in the offices of private attorneys, and why this little-known fact is one of the biggest reasons for the widening wealth gap between the holders of capital and everybody else.

In this revealing book, Katharina Pistor argues that the law selectively "codes" certain assets, endowing them with the capacity to protect and produce private wealth. With the right legal coding, any object, claim, or idea can be turned into capital -- and lawyers are the keepers of the code. Pistor describes how they pick and choose among different legal systems and legal devices for the ones that best serve their clients' needs, and how techniques that were first perfected centuries ago to code landholdings as capital are being used today to code stocks, bonds, ideas, and even expectations -- assets that exist only in law.
-Publisher's Description

The Known Citizen: A History of Privacy in Modern America

Sarah E. Igo, The Known Citizen: A History of Privacy in Modern America (Harvard University Press, 2018).

Privacy was not always a matter of public import. But beginning in the late nineteenth century, as corporate industry, social institutions, and the federal government swelled, increasing numbers of citizens believed their privacy to be endangered. Popular journalism and communication technologies, welfare bureaucracies and police tactics, market research and workplace testing, scientific inquiry and computer data banks, tell-all memoirs and social media all propelled privacy to the foreground of U.S. culture. Jurists and philosophers but also ordinary people weighed the perils, the possibilities, and the promise of being known. In the process, they redrew the borders of contemporary selfhood and citizenship.

The Known Citizen reveals how privacy became the indispensable language for monitoring the ever-shifting line between our personal and social selves. Igo's sweeping history, from the era of "instantaneous photography" to the age of big data, uncovers the surprising ways that debates over what should be kept out of the public eye have shaped U.S. politics and society. It offers the first wide-angle view of privacy as it has been lived and imagined by modern Americans.
-Publisher's Description

Fidelity & Constraint: How the Supreme Court Has Read the American Constitution

Lawrence Lessig, Fidelity & Constraint: How the Supreme Court Has Read the American Constitution (Oxford University Press, 2019).

In Fidelity & Constraint, Lawrence Lessig explains that one of the most basic approaches to interpreting the constitution is the process of translation. Indeed, some of the most significant shifts in constitutional doctrine are products of the evolution over time of the translation process. In every new era, judges understand their translations as instances of "interpretive fidelity," framed within each new temporal context.

Yet, as Lessig also argues, there is a repeatedly occurring countermove that upends the process of translation. Throughout American history, there has been a second fidelity in addition to interpretive fidelity: what Lessig calls "fidelity to role." In each of the cycles of translation that he describes, the role of the judge -- the ultimate translator -- has evolved too. Old ways of interpreting the text now become illegitimate because they do not match up with the judge's perceived role. And when that conflict occurs, the practice of judges within our tradition has been to follow the guidance of a fidelity to role. Ultimately, Lessig not only shows us how important the concept of translation is to constitutional interpretation, but also exposes the institutional limits on this practice.
-Publisher's Description

White Shoe: How a New Breed of Wall Street Lawyers Changed Big Business and the American Century

John Oller, White Shoe: How a New Breed of Wall Street Lawyers Changed Big Business and the American Century (Dutton, 2019).

The legal profession once operated on a smaller scale -- folksy lawyers arguing for fairness and justice before a judge and jury. But by year 1900, a new type of lawyer had been born, one who understood business as well as the law. Working hand in glove with their clients, over the next two decades these New York City "white shoe" lawyers devised and implemented legal strategies that would drive the business world throughout the twentieth century. These lawyers were the architects of the new monopolistic corporations so despised by many, and they acted as guardians who helped the kings of industry fend off government overreaching. Yet they also quietly steered their robber baron clients away from a "public be damned" attitude toward more enlightened corporate behavior during a period of progressive, turbulent change in America.

Author John Oller, himself a former Wall Street lawyer, gives us a richly written glimpse of turn-of-the-century New York, from the grandeur of private mansions and elegant hotels to the city's early skyscrapers and transportation systems and the depths of its deplorable tenement housing conditions. Some of the biggest names of the era are featured, including business titans J. P. Morgan and John D. Rockefeller; lawyer statesmen Elihu Root and Charles Evans Hughes; and presidents Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft, and Woodrow Wilson.
-Publisher's Description

Slices & Lumps: Division and Aggregation in Law and Life

Lee Anne Fennell, Slices and Lumps: Division and Aggregation in Law and Life (University of Chicago Press, 2019).

How things are divided up or pieced together matters. Half a bridge is of no use at all. Conversely, many things would do more good if they could be divided up differently: Perhaps you would prefer a job that involves a third fewer hours and a third less pay or a car that materializes only when needed and is priced accordingly? Difficulties in "slicing" and "lumping" shape nearly every facet of how we live and work -- and a great deal of law and policy as well.

Lee Anne Fennell explores how both types of challenges -- carving out useful slices and assembling useful lumps -- surface in myriad contexts, from hot-button issues like conservation and eminent domain to developments in the sharing economy to personal struggles over work, money, time, diet and exercise. Yet the significance of configuration is often overlooked, leading to missed opportunities for improving our lives. With a technology-fueled entrepreneurial explosion under way that is dividing goods, services, and jobs in novel ways, and as urbanization and environmental threats raise the stakes for assembling resources and cooperation, this is an especially exciting and crucial time to confront questions of slicing and lumping. The future of the city, the workplace, the marketplace, and the environment all turn on matters of configuration, as do the prospects for more effective legal doctrines, for better management of finances and health, and more. This book reveals configuration's power and potential -- as a unifying concept and as a focus of public and private innovation.
-Publisher's Description

The Federal Impeachment Process: A Constitutional and Historical Analysis

Michael J. Gerhardt, The Federal Impeachment Process: A Constitutional and Historical Analysis (University of Chicago Press, 2019).
For more than twenty years, The Federal Impeachment Process has served as the most complete analysis of the constitutional and legal issues raised in every impeachment proceeding in American history. Impeachment, Michael J. Gerhardt shows, is an inherently political process designed to expose and remedy political crimes -- serious breaches of duty, abuse of power, or injuries to the Republic. Subject neither to judicial review nor to presidential veto, impeachment is a unique congressional power that requires members of Congress to consider the political and constitutional ramifications, the gravity of the offense charged, the harm to the constitutional order, and the link between an official's misconduct and duties.

For this third edition, Gerhardt updates the book to cover questions relating to impeachment since President Clinton's acquittal, as well as recent scholarly debates. He discusses issues arising from President Trump's possible impeachment, including whether a sitting president may be investigated, prosecuted, and convicted for criminal misconduct or whether impeachment and conviction in Congress is the only way to sanction a sitting president; what the "emoluments clause" means and whether it might provide the basis for presidential removal; whether incompetence may serve as the basis for impeachment; and the extent to which the past conduct of public officials may serve as a basis for their impeachment and removal from office.
-Publisher's Description

Friday, September 13, 2019

The Little Book on Oral Argument

Alan L. Dworsky, The Little Book on Oral Argument (2d ed. 2019)

The Little Book on Oral Argument, Second Edition by Alan Dworsky is a reader-friendly guide to oral argument for law students and new lawyers, designed to introduce and cover its subject in a simple and entertaining, yet comprehensive, way. It focuses on how to argue a case before an appellate court. Additionally, it contains chapters on such topics as style, substance, structure, questions, and rebuttal to explain effective approaches to this peculiar form of conversation. More profoundly, it delves into the core theme of oral argument—how one interacts with one’s audience. Judges can interrupt with questions, cut a person off, or force a lawyer to move on.

Each oral argument is different, requiring one to make moment-to-moment adjustments to fit the situation and the judges. To make these adjustments intelligently, there is a need for more than mechanical rules. There is also a need to understand the psychology of persuasion.

-publisher's description

Friday, August 30, 2019

Troublemakers: Students' Rights and Racial Justice in the Long 1960s

Kathryn Schumaker, Troublemakers: Students' Rights and Racial Justice in the Long 1960s (NYU Press, 2019)

In the late 1960s, protests led by students roiled high schools across the country. As school desegregation finally took place on a wide scale, students of color were particularly vocal in contesting the racial discrimination they saw in school policies and practices. And yet, these young people had no legal right to express dissent at school. It was not until 1969 that the Supreme Court would recognize the First Amendment rights of students in the landmark Tinker v. Des Moines case.

A series of students’ rights lawsuits in the desegregation era challenged everything from school curricula to disciplinary policies. But in casting students as “troublemakers” or as “culturally deficient,” school authorities and other experts persuaded the courts to set limits on rights protections that made students of color disproportionately vulnerable to suspension and expulsion.

Troublemakers traces the history of black and Chicano student protests from small-town Mississippi to metropolitan Denver and beyond, showcasing the stories of individual protesters and demonstrating how their actions contributed to the eventual recognition of the constitutional rights of all students. Offering a fresh interpretation of this pivotal era, Troublemakers shows that when black and Chicano teenagers challenged racial discrimination in American public schools, they helped remake American constitutional law and establish protections of free speech, due process, equal protection, and privacy for students.

Friday, August 23, 2019

Biased: Uncovering the Hidden Prejudice That Shapes What We See, Think, and Do

Jennifer L. Eberhardt, Biased: Uncovering the Hidden Prejudice That Shapes What We See, Think, and Do (Penguin Random House, 2019).

You don’t have to be racist to be biased. Unconscious bias can be at work without our realizing it, and even when we genuinely wish to treat all people equally, ingrained stereotypes can infect our visual perception, attention, memory, and behavior. This has an impact on education, employment, housing, and criminal justice. In Biased, with a perspective that is at once scientific, investigative, and informed by personal experience, Jennifer Eberhardt offers us insights into the dilemma and a path forward.

Eberhardt works extensively as a consultant to law enforcement and as a psychologist at the forefront of this new field. Her research takes place in courtrooms and boardrooms, in prisons, on the street, and in classrooms and coffee shops. She shows us the subtle–and sometimes dramatic–daily repercussions of implicit bias in how teachers grade students, or managers deal with customers. It has an enormous impact on the conduct of criminal justice, from the rapid decisions police officers have to make to sentencing practices in court. Eberhardt’s work and her book are both influenced by her own life, and the personal stories she shares emphasize the need for change. She has helped companies that include Airbnb and Nextdoor address bias in their business practices and has led anti-bias initiatives for police departments across the country. Here, she offers practical suggestions for reform and new practices that are useful for organizations as well as individuals.

Unblinking about the tragic consequences of prejudice, Eberhardt addresses how racial bias is not the fault of nor restricted to a few “bad apples” but is present at all levels of society in media, education, and business. The good news is that we are not hopelessly doomed by our innate prejudices. In Biased, Eberhardt reminds us that racial bias is a human problem–one all people can play a role in solving.

-Publisher's description

Friday, August 16, 2019

Courting the Community: Legitimacy and Punishment in a Community Court

Christine Zozula, Courting the Community: Legitimacy and Punishment in a Community Court (Temple Univ. Press, 2019).

Community Courts are designed to handle a city’s low-level offenses and quality-of-life crimes, such as littering, loitering, or public drunkenness. Court advocates maintain that these largely victimless crimes jeopardize the well-being of residents, businesses, and visitors. Whereas traditional courts might dismiss such cases or administer a small fine, community courts aim to meaningfully punish offenders to avoid disorder escalating to apocalyptic decline.

Courting the Community is a fascinating ethnography that goes behind the scenes to explore how quality-of-life discourses are translated into court practices that marry therapeutic and rehabilitative ideas. Christine Zozula shows how residents and businesses participate in meting out justice—such as through community service, treatment, or other sanctions—making it more emotional, less detached, and more legitimate in the eyes of stakeholders. She also examines both “impact panels,” in which offenders, residents, and business owners meet to discuss how quality-of-life crimes negatively impact the neighborhood, as well as strategic neighborhood outreach efforts to update residents on cases and gauge their concerns.

Zozula’s nuanced investigation of community courts can lead us to a deeper understanding of punishment and rehabilitation and, by extension, the current state of the American court system.

-Publisher's description

Friday, August 9, 2019

American Intolerance: Our Dark History of Demonizing Immigrants

Robert Bartholomew & Anja Reumschuessel, American Intolerance: Our Dark History of Demonizing Immigrants (Prometheus 2018).

This historical review of the US treatment of immigrants and minority groups documents the suspicion and persecution that often met newcomers and those perceived to be different.

Contrary to popular belief, the poor and huddled masses were never welcome in America. Though the engraving on the base of the Statue of Liberty makes that claim, history reveals a far less-welcoming message. This comprehensive survey of cultural and racial exclusion in the United States examines the legacy of hostility toward immigrants over two centuries.

The authors document abuses against Catholics in the early 19th century in response to the influx of German and Irish immigrants; hostility against Mexicans throughout the Southwest, where signs in bars and restaurants read, "No Dogs, No Negros, No Mexicans"; "yellow peril" fears leading to a ban on Chinese immigration for ten years; punitive measures against Native Americans traditions, which became punishable by fines and hard labor; the persecution of German Americans during World War I and Japanese Americans during World War II; the refusal to admit Jewish refugees of the Holocaust; and the ongoing legacy of mistreating African Americans from slavery to the injustices of the present day.

Though the authors note that the United States has accepted tens of millions of immigrants during its relatively short existence, its troubling history of persecution is often overlooked. President Donald Trump's targeting of Muslim and Mexican immigrants is just the most recent chapter in a long, sad history of social panics about "evil" foreigners who are made scapegoats due to their ethnicity or religious beliefs.
- Publisher's description                                       

Friday, August 2, 2019

Does America Need More Innovators?

Matthew Wisnioski (Virginia Tech) ed., Does America Need More Innovators? (MIT Press 2019).

A critical exploration of today's global imperative to innovate, by champions, critics, and reformers of innovation.
Corporate executives, politicians, and school board leaders agree―Americans must innovate. Innovation experts fuel this demand with books and services that instruct aspiring innovators in best practices, personal habits, and workplace cultures for fostering innovation. But critics have begun to question the unceasing promotion of innovation, pointing out its gadget-centric shallowness, the lack of diversity among innovators, and the unequal distribution of innovation's burdens and rewards. Meanwhile, reformers work to make the training of innovators more inclusive and the outcomes of innovation more responsible. This book offers an overdue critical exploration of today's global imperative to innovate by bringing together innovation's champions, critics, and reformers in conversation.
The book presents an overview of innovator training, exploring the history, motivations, and philosophies of programs in private industry, universities, and government; offers a primer on critical innovation studies, with essays that historicize, contextualize, and problematize the drive to create innovators; and considers initiatives that seek to reform and reshape what it means to be an innovator.

- Publisher's description                          

Tuesday, July 30, 2019

Almost Citizens: Puerto Rico, the U.S. Constitution, and Empire

Sam Erman, Almost Citizens: Puerto Rico, the U.S. Constitution, and Empire (Cambridge Univ. Press, 2019).

Almost Citizens lays out the tragic story of how the United States denied Puerto Ricans full citizenship following annexation of the island in 1898. As America became an overseas empire, a handful of remarkable Puerto Ricans debated with US legislators, presidents, judges, and others over who was a citizen and what citizenship meant. This struggle caused a fundamental shift in constitution law: away from the post-Civil War regime of citizenship, rights, and statehood and toward doctrines that accommodated racist imperial governance. Erman's gripping account shows how, in the wake of the Spanish-American War, administrators, lawmakers, and presidents together with judges deployed creativity and ambiguity to transform constitutional meaning for a quarter of a century. The result is a history in which the United States and Latin America, Reconstruction and empire, and law and bureaucracy intertwine.

-Publisher's description

Monday, July 29, 2019

Deported Americans

Beth C. Caldwell, Deported Americans (Duke Univ. Press, 2019).

When Gina was deported to Tijuana, Mexico, in 2011, she left behind her parents, siblings, and children, all of whom are U.S. citizens. Despite having once had a green card, Gina was removed from the only country she had ever known. In Deported Americans legal scholar and former public defender Beth C. Caldwell tells Gina's story alongside those of dozens of other Dreamers, who are among the hundreds of thousands who have been deported to Mexico in recent years. Many of them had lawful status, held green cards, or served in the U.S. military. Now, they have been banished, many with no hope of lawfully returning. Having interviewed over one hundred deportees and their families, Caldwell traces deportation's long-term consequences—such as depression, drug use, and homelessness—on both sides of the border. Showing how U.S. deportation law systematically fails to protect the rights of immigrants and their families, Caldwell challenges traditional notions of what it means to be an American and recommends legislative and judicial reforms to mitigate the injustices suffered by the millions of U.S. citizens affected by deportation.

-publisher's description

Sunday, July 28, 2019

The Making of Justice: Reflections on My First 94 Years

Justice John Paul Stevens, The Making of a Justice: Reflections on My First 94 Years (Little, Brown & Co., 2019).

When Justice John Paul Stevens retired from the Supreme Court of the United States in 2010, he left a legacy of service unequaled in the history of the Court. During his thirty-four-year tenure, Justice Stevens was a prolific writer, authoring in total more than a thousand opinions. In The Making of a Justice, he recounts the first ninety-four years of his extraordinary life, offering an intimate and illuminating account of his service on the nation's highest court.

Appointed by President Ford and eventually retiring during President Obama's first term, Justice Stevens has been witness to, and an integral part of, landmark changes in American society.

With stories of growing up in Chicago, his work as a naval traffic analyst at Pearl Harbor during World War II, and his early days in private practice, as well as a behind-the-scenes look at some of the most important Supreme Court decisions over the past four decades, The Making of a Justice offers a warm and fascinating account of Justice Stevens's unique and transformative life. This comprehensive memoir is a must-read for those trying to better understand our country and the Constitution.

-Publisher's description

Wednesday, July 24, 2019


Issa Kohler-Hausmann, Misdemeanorland (Princeton University Press, 2019).

Felony conviction and mass incarceration attract considerable media attention these days, yet the most common criminal-justice encounters are for misdemeanors, not felonies, and the most common outcome is not prison. In the early 1990s, New York City launched an initiative under the banner of Broken Windows policing to dramatically expand enforcement against low-level offenses. Misdemeanorland is the first book to document the fates of hundreds of thousands of people hauled into lower criminal courts as part of this policing experiment.

Drawing on three years of fieldwork inside and outside of the courtroom, in-depth interviews, and analysis of trends in arrests and dispositions of misdemeanors going back three decades, Issa Kohler-Hausmann argues that lower courts have largely abandoned the adjudicative model of criminal law administration in which questions of factual guilt and legal punishment drive case outcomes. Due to the sheer volume of arrests, lower courts have adopted a managerial model—and the implications are troubling. Kohler-Hausmann shows how significant volumes of people are marked, tested, and subjected to surveillance and control even though about half the cases result in some form of legal dismissal. She describes in harrowing detail how the reach of America's penal state extends well beyond the shocking numbers of people incarcerated in prisons or stigmatized by a felony conviction.

Revealing and innovative, Misdemeanorland shows how the lower reaches of our criminal justice system operate as a form of social control and surveillance, often without adjudicating cases or imposing formal punishment.

- Publisher's description

Friday, July 19, 2019

A Bright Future: How Some Countries Have Solved Climate Change and the Rest Can Follow

Joshua S. Goldstein & Steffan A. Qvist, A Bright Future: How Some Countries Have Solved Climate Change and the Rest Can Follow (2019).

As climate change quickly approaches a series of turning points that guarantee disastrous outcomes, a solution is hiding in plain sight. Several countries have already replaced fossil fuels with low-carbon energy sources, and done so rapidly, in one to two decades. By following their methods, we could decarbonize the global economy by midcentury, replacing fossil fuels even while world energy use continues to rise. But so far we have lacked the courage to really try.

In this clear-sighted and compelling book, Joshua Goldstein and Staffan Qvist explain how clean energy quickly replaced fossil fuels in such places as Sweden, France, South Korea, and Ontario. Their people enjoyed prosperity and growing energy use in harmony with the natural environment. They didn't do this through personal sacrifice, nor through 100 percent renewables, but by using them in combination with an energy source the Swedes call kärnkraft, hundreds of times safer and cleaner than coal.

Clearly written and beautifully illustrated, yet footnoted with extensive technical references, Goldstein and Qvist's book will provide a new touchstone in discussions of climate change. It could spark a shift in world energy policy that, in the words of Steven Pinker's foreword, literally saves the world.
- Publisher's description                                    

Friday, July 12, 2019

White Fragility: Why It's So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism

Robin DiAngelo, White Fragility: Why It's So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism (Beacon Press 2018).

The New York Times best-selling book exploring the counterproductive reactions white people have when their assumptions about race are challenged, and how these reactions maintain racial inequality.

In this “vital, necessary, and beautiful book” (Michael Eric Dyson), antiracist educator Robin DiAngelo deftly illuminates the phenomenon of white fragility and “allows us to understand racism as a practice not restricted to ‘bad people’ (Claudia Rankine). Referring to the defensive moves that white people make when challenged racially, white fragility is characterized by emotions such as anger, fear, and guilt, and by behaviors including argumentation and silence. These behaviors, in turn, function to reinstate white racial equilibrium and prevent any meaningful cross-racial dialogue. In this in-depth exploration, DiAngelo examines how white fragility develops, how it protects racial inequality, and what we can do to engage more constructively.
- Publisher's description                      

Friday, July 5, 2019

Criminal Trials and Mental Disorders

Thomas L. Hafemeister, Criminal Trials and Mental Disorders (New York University Press 2019).

The complicated relationship between defendants with mental health disorders and the criminal justice system 

The American criminal justice system is based on the bedrock principles of fairness and justice for all. In striving to ensure that all criminal defendants are treated equally under the law, it endeavors to handle similar cases in similar fashion, attempting to apply rules and procedures even-handedly regardless of a defendant’s social class, race, ethnicity, or gender. Yet, the criminal justice system has also recognized exceptions when special circumstances underlie a defendant’s behavior or are likely to skew the defendant’s trial. One of the most controversial set of exceptions –often poorly articulated and inconsistently applied – involves criminal defendants with a mental disorder.  

A series of special rules and procedures has evolved over the centuries, often without fanfare and even today with little systematic examination, that lawyers and judges apply to cases involving defendants with a mental disorder. This book provides an analysis of the key issues in this dynamic interplay between individuals with a mental disorder and the criminal justice system. 

The volume identifies the various stages of criminal justice proceedings when the mental status of a defendant may be relevant, associated legal and policy issues, the history and evolution of these issues, and how they are currently resolved. To assist this exploration, the text also offers an overview of mental disorders, their relevance to criminal proceedings, how forensic mental health assessments are conducted and employed during these proceedings, and their application to competency and responsibility determinations. In sum, this book provides an important resource for students and scholars with an interest in mental health, law, and criminal justice.
- Publisher's description         

Friday, June 28, 2019

Masculinity, Labour, and Neoliberalism

Masculinity, Labour, and Neoliberalism (Charlie Walker & Steven Roberts eds., Palgrave Macmillan 2018).

This book explores the ways in which neoliberal capitalism has reshaped the lives of working-class men around the world. It focuses on the effects of employment change and of new forms of governmentality on men’s experiences of both public and private life. The book presents a range of international studies―from the US, UK, and Australia to Western and Northern Europe, Russia, and Nigeria―that move beyond discourses positing a ‘masculinity crisis’ or pathologizing working-class men. Instead, the authors look at the active ways men have dealt with forms of economic and symbolic marginalization and the barriers they have faced in doing so. While the focus of the volume is employment change, it covers a range of topics from consumption and leisure to education and family.

- Publisher's description

Friday, June 21, 2019

Computer Games and Immersive Entertainment: Next Frontiers in Intellectual Property Law

Computer Games and Immersive Entertainment: Next Frontiers in Intellectual Property Law (Chrissie Scelsi & Ross A. Dannenberg eds., ABA 2d ed. 2018).

A one-of-a-kind, cutting-edge resource, this book explores and discusses how to obtain traditional IP rights in the non-traditional settings of video game and immersive environments, and serves as a primer for practitioners researching these emerging legal issues. Each chapter covers important IP issues involved with computer games and immersive entertainment, including end-user license agreements, copyrights, patents, trademarks, trade secrets, rights of publicity, and international considerations.
- Publisher's description                                 

Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Guns in Law

Guns in Law (Austin Sarat et al. eds., University of Massachusetts Press 2019).

Weapons have been a source of political and legal debate for centuries. Aristotle considered the possession of arms a fundamental source of political power and wrote that tyrants “mistrust the people and deprive them of their arms.” Today ownership of weapons—whether handguns or military-grade assault weapons—poses more acute legal problems than ever before. In this volume, the editors’ introduction traces the history of gun control in the United States, arguing that until the 1980s courts upheld reasonable gun control measures. The contributors confront urgent questions, among them the usefulness of history as a guide in ongoing struggles over gun regulation, the changing meaning of the Second Amendment, the perspective of law enforcement on guns and gun control law, and individual and relational perspectives on gun rights.

-Publisher's description

Friday, June 14, 2019

Downriver: Into the Future of Water in the West

Heather Hansman, Downriver: Into the Future of Water in the West (University of Chicago Press 2019).

The Green River, the most significant tributary of the Colorado River, runs 730 miles from the glaciers of Wyoming to the desert canyons of Utah. Over its course it meanders through ranches, cities, national parks, endangered fish habitats, and some of the most significant natural gas fields in the country, as it provides water for 33 million people. Stopped up by dams, slaked off by irrigation, and dried up by cities, the Green is crucial, overused, and at risk, now more than ever.

Fights over the river’s water, and what’s going to happen to it in the future, are longstanding, intractable, and only getting worse as the West gets hotter and drier and more people depend on the river with each passing year. As a former raft guide and an environmental reporter, Heather Hansman knew these fights were happening, but she felt driven to see them from a different perspective—from the river itself. So she set out on a journey, in a one-person inflatable pack raft, to paddle the river from source to confluence and see what the experience might teach her. Mixing lyrical accounts of quiet paddling through breathtaking beauty with nights spent camping solo and lively discussions with farmers, city officials, and other people met along the way, Downriver is the story of that journey, a foray into the present—and future—of water in the West.
- Publisher's description                                                       

Friday, June 7, 2019

Desert Gardens of Steve Martino

Caren Yglesias et al., Desert Gardens of Steve Martino (2018).

This survey of twenty-one gardens by Steve Martino, whose work blends colorful, man-made elements with native plants to reflect the sun-drenched beauty of the desert, is sure to inspire gardeners, landscapers, and admirers of California and the Southwest.

For more than thirty years, Steve Martino has been committed to the development and advancement of landscape architecture in the Southwest. His pioneering work with native plant material and the development of a desert-derived design aesthetic is widely recognized. A recurring theme of his work is the dramatic juxtaposition of man-made elements with ecological processes of the region. His love for the desert--the interplay of light and shadow, the colors, plants, and wildlife--inspires his work.

As Martino explains, "Gardens consist of two worlds, the man-made and the natural one. I've described my design style as 'Weeds and Walls'--nature and man. I use native plants to make the transition from a building to the adjacent natural desert." 

Though Martino's work is deeply connected to the natural world, he also has a flair for the dramatic, which is apparent from his lively color selections, sculptural use of plants, and keen attention to lighting, shadows, and reflections. Boldly colored stucco walls frame compelling views of the desert and sky, expanding the outdoor living area while solving common site problems such as lack of privacy or shade. Interspersed are custom structures molded in translucent fiberglass in vivid hues--colorful arbors, outdoor showers, and internally lit benches.
- Publisher's description                  

Wednesday, June 5, 2019

A Lot of People Are Saying: The New Conspiracism and the Assault on Democracy

Russell Muirhead (Dartmouth College) and Nancy L. Rosenblum (Harvard University), A Lot of People Are Saying: The New Conspiracism and the Assault on Democracy (Princeton University Press, 2019).

“Conspiracy theories are as old as politics. But conspiracists today have introduced something new―conspiracy without theory. And the new conspiracism has moved from the fringes to the heart of government with the election of Donald Trump. In A Lot of People Are Saying, Russell Muirhead and Nancy Rosenblum show how the new conspiracism differs from classic conspiracy theory, why so few officials speak truth to conspiracy, and what needs to be done to resist it.”

 – Publisher’s Description

The Right to Do Wrong: Morality and the Limits of Law

Mark Osiel (University of Iowa College of Law), The Right to Do Wrong: Morality and the Limits of Law (Harvard University Press, 2019).

“Much of what we could do, we shouldn’t—and we don’t. We have a free-speech right to be offensive, but we know we will face outrage in response. We may declare bankruptcy, but not without stigma. Moral norms constantly demand more of us than the law requires, sustaining promises we can legally break and preventing disrespectful behavior the law allows.

Mark Osiel takes up this curious interplay between lenient law and restrictive morality, showing that law permits much wrongdoing because we assume that rights are paired with informal but enforceable duties. . . .For the most part, this system has worked. The Right to Do Wrong collects vivid case studies and social scientific research to explore how resistance to the exercise of rights picks up where law leaves off and shapes the legal system in turn.”

– Publisher’s description

Urban Gardening and The Struggle for Social and Spatial Justice

Chiara Certomà (Ghent University), Susan Noori, and Martin Sondermann (Academy for Spatial Planning and Research), Urban Gardening and The Struggle for Social and Spatial Justice (Manchester University Press, 2019).

“This is the first book which explicitly addressed the issues of urban gardening and spatial justice. As urban gardening, initiatives have mushroomed worldwide, they have targeted a wide range of disparate goals, the majority of which are proven to be socio-political, rather than merely environmental, ecological, or economic. By combining scholarly perspectives with real cases, the essays in this collection focus on how urban gardening practices are able to address the most fundamental issues of spatial justice, social cohesion, inclusiveness, social innovations, and equity in cities.”

 – Publisher’s description

Conformity: The Power of Social Influences

Cass R. Sunstein (Harvard University), Conformity: The Power of Social Influences (New York University Press 2019).

“Bestselling author Cass R. Sunstein reveals the appeal and the danger of conformity. We live in an era of tribalism, polarization, and intense social division — separating people along lines of religion, political conviction, race, ethnicity, and sometimes gender. How did this happen? In Conformity, Cass R. Sunstein argues that the key to making sense of living in this fractured world lies in understanding the idea of conformity — what it is and how it works — as well as the countervailing force of dissent.”

 – Publisher’s description

Rationing the Constitution: How Judicial Capacity Shapes Supreme Court Decision-Making

Andrew Coan (University of Arizona School of Law), Rationing the Constitution: How Judicial Capacity Shapes Supreme Court Decision-Making (Harvard University Press 2019).

“Compared with the vast machinery surrounding Congress and the president, the Supreme Court is a tiny institution that can resolve only a small fraction of the constitutional issues that arise in any given year. Rationing the Constitution shows that this simple yet frequently ignored fact is essential to understanding how the Supreme Court makes constitutional law.

Due to the structural organization of the judiciary and certain widely shared professional norms, the capacity of the Supreme Court to review lower-court decisions is severely limited. From this fact, Andrew Coan develops a novel and arresting theory of Supreme Court decision-making. In deciding cases, the Court must not invite more litigation than it can handle. On many of the most important constitutional questions—touching on federalism, the separation of powers, and individual rights—this constraint creates a strong pressure to adopt hard-edged categorical rules, or defer to the political process, or both. . . . The limits of judicial capacity also substantially constrain the Court’s much touted—and frequently lamented—power to overrule democratic majorities. As Rationing the Constitution demonstrates, the Supreme Court is David, not Goliath.”
– Publisher’s description

Guilty Pleasures: Comedy and Law in America

Laura Little (Temple University Law School), Guilty Pleasures: Comedy and Law in America (Oxford University Press 2019).

“Professor Laura Little has written one of the most interesting, original, and entertaining books that I have read in a long time. She examines how humor is treated by the law in a serious and careful manner, but at the same time reveals the humor about the law in cartoons and jokes. I learned a great deal from the book and also no book about law has caused me to laugh so much.”

 – Erwin Chemerinsky, Dean and Jesse H. Choper Distinguished Professor of Law, University of California, Berkeley School of Law

Friday, May 31, 2019

The Politicization of Safety: Critical Perspectives on Domestic Violence Responses

The Politicization of Safety: Critical Perspectives on Domestic Violence Responses (Jane K. Stoever ed., New York University Press 2019).

Domestic violence is commonly assumed to be a bipartisan, nonpolitical issue, with politicians of all stripes claiming to work to end family violence. Nevertheless, the Violence Against Women Act expired for over 500 days between 2012 and 2013 due to differences between the U.S. Senate and House, demonstrating that legal protections for domestic abuse survivors are both highly political and highly vulnerable. Racial and gender politics, the move toward criminalization, reproductive justice concerns, gun control debates, and political interests are increasingly shaping responses to domestic violence, demonstrating the need for greater consideration of the interplay of politics, domestic violence, and how the law works in people’s lives. 

The Politicization of Safety provides a critical historical perspective on domestic violence responses in the United States. It grapples with the ways in which child welfare systems and civil and criminal justice responses intersect, and considers the different, overlapping ways in which survivors of domestic abuse are forced to cope with institutionalized discrimination based on race, gender, sexual orientation, and immigration status. The book also examines movement politics and the feminist movement with respect to domestic violence policies. The tensions discussed in this book, similar to those involved in the #metoo movement, include questions of accountability, reckoning, redemption, healing, and forgiveness. 

What is the future of feminism and the movements against gender-based violence and domestic violence? Readers are invited to question assumptions about how society and the legal system respond to intimate partner violence and to challenge the domestic violence field to move beyond old paradigms and contend with larger justice issues.
- Publisher's description                      

Friday, May 24, 2019

Authors and Apparatus: A Media History of Copyright

Monika Dommann (University of Zurich), Authors and Apparatus: A Media History of Copyright (Cornell University Press 2019).

Copyright is under siege. From file sharing to vast library scanning projects, new technologies, actors, and attitudes toward intellectual property threaten the value of creative work. However, while digital media and the Internet have made making and sharing perfect copies of original works almost effortless, debates about protecting authors' rights are nothing new. In this sweeping account of the evolution of copyright law since the mid-nineteenth century, Monika Dommann explores how radical media changes―from sheet music and phonographs to photocopiers and networked information systems―have challenged and transformed legal and cultural concept of authors' rights. 

Dommann provides a critical transatlantic perspective on developments in copyright law and mechanical reproduction of words and music, charting how artists, media companies, and lawmakers in the United States and western Europe approached the complex tangle of technological innovation, intellectual property, and consumer interests. From the seemingly innocuous music box, invented around 1800, to BASF's magnetic tapes and Xerox machines, she demonstrates how copyright has been continuously destabilized by emerging technologies, requiring new legal norms to regulate commercial and private copying practices. Without minimizing digital media's radical disruption to notions of intellectual property, Dommann uncovers the deep historical roots of the conflict between copyright and media―a story that can inform present-day debates over the legal protection of authorship.
- Publisher's Description                                       

Friday, May 17, 2019

Capitalist Pigs: Pigs, Pork, and Power in America

J.L. Anderson (Mount Royal University), Capitalist Pigs: Pigs, Pork, and Power in America (West Virginia University 2019).

Pigs are everywhere in United States history. They cleared frontiers and built cities (notably Cincinnati, once known as Porkopolis), served as an early form of welfare, and were at the center of two nineteenth-century “pig wars.” American pork fed the hemisphere; lard literally greased the wheels of capitalism. 

J. L. Anderson has written an ambitious history of pigs and pig products from the Columbian exchange to the present, emphasizing critical stories of production, consumption, and waste in American history. He examines different cultural assumptions about pigs to provide a window into the nation’s regional, racial, and class fault lines, and maps where pigs are (and are not) to reveal a deep history of the American landscape. A contribution to American history, food studies, agricultural history, and animal studies, Capitalist Pigs is an accessible, deeply researched, and often surprising portrait of one of the planet’s most consequential interspecies relationships. 

- Publisher's description

Friday, May 10, 2019

The Protection of Non-Traditional Trademarks: Critical Perspectives

The Protection of Non-Traditional Trademarks: Critical Perspectives (Irene Calboli & Martin Senftleben eds., Oxford University Press 2019).

This volume offers a detailed analysis of the issues related to the protection of non-traditional marks.

In recent years, the domain of trademark law and the scope of trademark protection has grown exponentially. Today, a wide variety of non-traditional marks, including colour, sound, smell, and shape marks, can be registered in many jurisdictions. However, this expansion of trademark protection has led to heated discussions and controversies about the impact of the protection of non-traditional marks on freedom of competition and, more generally, on socially valuable use of these or similar signs in unrelated non-commercial contexts. These tensions have also led to increasing litigation in this area across several jurisdictions.

This book provides an overview of the debate and state of the law surrounding non-traditional marks at the international, regional, and national level. In particular, this book addresses relevant international treaties administered by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) and the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects to Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) as well as several regional and national legislations and leading judicial decisions in order to examine current law and practice culminating in critical reflections and suggestions on the topic.

- Publisher's description