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Full-Text Articles in Law

The Disruptive Neuroscience Of Judicial Choice, Anna Spain Bradley Jan 2018

The Disruptive Neuroscience Of Judicial Choice, Anna Spain Bradley

Articles

Scholars of judicial behavior overwhelmingly substantiate the historical presumption that most judges act impartially and independent most of the time. The reality of human behavior, however, says otherwise. Drawing upon untapped evidence from neuroscience, this Article provides a comprehensive evaluation of how bias, emotion, and empathy—all central to human decision-making—are inevitable in judicial choice. The Article offers three novel neuroscientific insights that explain why this inevitability is so. First, because human cognition associated with decision-making involves multiple, and often intersecting, neural regions and circuits, logic and reason are not separate from bias and emotion in the brain. Second ...


The Persistence Of Proximate Cause: How Legal Doctrine Thrives On Skepticism, Jessie Allen Jan 2012

The Persistence Of Proximate Cause: How Legal Doctrine Thrives On Skepticism, Jessie Allen

Articles

This Article starts with a puzzle: Why is the doctrinal approach to “proximate cause” so resilient despite longstanding criticism? Proximate cause is a particularly extreme example of doctrine that limps along despite near universal consensus that it cannot actually determine legal outcomes. Why doesn’t that widely recognized indeterminacy disable proximate cause as a decision-making device? To address this puzzle, I pick up a cue from the legal realists, a group of skeptical lawyers, law professors, and judges, who, in the 1920s and 1930s, compared legal doctrine to ritual magic. I take that comparison seriously, perhaps more seriously, and definitely ...


The Realism Of Race In Judicial Decision Making: An Empirical Analysis Of Plaintiffs' Race And Judges' Race, Pat K. Chew, Robert E. Kelley Jan 2012

The Realism Of Race In Judicial Decision Making: An Empirical Analysis Of Plaintiffs' Race And Judges' Race, Pat K. Chew, Robert E. Kelley

Articles

American society is becoming increasingly diverse. At the same time, the federal judiciary continues to be predominantly White. What difference does this make? This article offers an empirical answer to that question through an extensive study of workplace racial harassment cases. It finds that judges of different races reach different conclusions, with non-African American judges less likely to hold for the plaintiffs. It also finds that plaintiffs of different races fare differently, with African Americans the most likely to lose and Hispanics the most likely to be successful. Finally, countering the formalism model’s tenet that judges are color-blind, the ...


Myth Of The Color-Blind Judge: An Empirical Analysis Of Racial Harassment Cases, Pat K. Chew, Robert E. Kelley Jan 2009

Myth Of The Color-Blind Judge: An Empirical Analysis Of Racial Harassment Cases, Pat K. Chew, Robert E. Kelley

Articles

This empirical study of over 400 federal cases, representing workplace racial harassment jurisprudence over a twenty-year period, found that judges' race significantly affects outcomes in these cases. African American judges rule differently than White judges, even when we take into account their political affiliation and case characteristics. At the same time, our findings indicate that judges of all races are attentive to relevant facts of the cases but interpret them differently. Thus, while we cannot predict how an individual judge might act, our study results strongly suggest that African American judges as a group and White judges as a group ...


Double-Consciousness In Constitutional Adjudication, Richard A. Primus Jan 2007

Double-Consciousness In Constitutional Adjudication, Richard A. Primus

Articles

Constitutional theorists are familiar with epistemic and consequentialist reasons why judges might allow their decision making to be shaped by strongly held public opinion. The epistemic approach treats public opinion as an expert indicator, while the consequentialistapproach counsels judges to compromise legally correct interpretations so as not to antagonize a hostile public. But there is also a third reason, which we can think ofas constitutive. In limited circumstances, the fact that the public strongly holds a given view can be one of the factors that together constitute the correct answer to a constitutional question. In those circumstances, what the public ...


The View From The Trenches: Report On The Breakout Sessions At The 2005 National Conference On Appellate Justice, Arthur D. Hellman Jan 2006

The View From The Trenches: Report On The Breakout Sessions At The 2005 National Conference On Appellate Justice, Arthur D. Hellman

Articles

In November 2005, four prominent legal organizations sponsored the second National Conference on Appellate Justice. One purpose was to take a fresh look at the operation of appellate courts 30 years after the first National Conference. As part of the 2005 Conference, small groups of judges and lawyers gathered in breakout sessions to discuss specific issues about the operation of the appellate system. This article summarizes and synthesizes the participants' comments. The article is organized around three major topics, each of which builds on a different contrast with the 1975 conference.

First, the participants in the earlier conference apparently assumed ...


A Reply--The Missing Portion, Pierre Schlag Jan 2003

A Reply--The Missing Portion, Pierre Schlag

Articles

No abstract provided.