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Full-Text Articles in Law

Brain Imaging For Legal Thinkers: A Guide For The Perplexed, Owen D. Jones, Joshua W. Buckholtz, Jeffrey D. Schall, Rene Marois Jan 2009

Brain Imaging For Legal Thinkers: A Guide For The Perplexed, Owen D. Jones, Joshua W. Buckholtz, Jeffrey D. Schall, Rene Marois

Vanderbilt Law School Faculty Publications

It has become increasingly common for brain images to be proffered as evidence in criminal and civil litigation. This Article - the collaborative product of scholars in law and neuroscience - provides three things.

First, it provides the first introduction, specifically for legal thinkers, to brain imaging. It describes in accessible ways the new techniques and methods that the legal system increasingly encounters.

Second, it provides a tutorial on how to read and understand a brain-imaging study. It does this by providing an annotated walk-through of the recently-published work (by three of the authors - Buckholtz, Jones, and Marois) that discovered the brain ...


Law, Biology, And Property: A New Theory Of The Endowment Effect, Owen D. Jones, Sarah F. Brosnan Jan 2008

Law, Biology, And Property: A New Theory Of The Endowment Effect, Owen D. Jones, Sarah F. Brosnan

Vanderbilt Law School Faculty Publications

Recent work at the intersection of law and behavioral biology has suggested numerous contexts in which legal thinking could benefit by integrating knowledge from behavioral biology. In one of those contexts, behavioral biology may help to provide theoretical foundation for, and potentially increased predictive power concerning, various psychological traits relevant to law. This Article describes an experiment that explores that context.

The paradoxical psychological bias known as the endowment effect puzzles economists, skews market behavior, impedes efficient exchange of goods and rights, and thereby poses important problems for law. Although the effect is known to vary widely, there are at ...


Law, Responsibility, And The Brain, Owen D. Jones, Hakwan C. Lau, Dean Mobbs, Christopher D. Frith Jan 2007

Law, Responsibility, And The Brain, Owen D. Jones, Hakwan C. Lau, Dean Mobbs, Christopher D. Frith

Vanderbilt Law School Faculty Publications

This article addresses new developments in neuroscience, and their implications for law. It explores, for example, the relationships between brain injury and violence, as well as the connections between mental disorders and criminal behaviors. It discusses a variety of issues surrounding brain fingerprinting, the use of brain scans for lie detection, and concerns about free will. It considers the possible uses for, and legal implications of, brain-imaging technology. And it also identifies six essential limits on the use of brain imaging in courtroom procedures.


Endowment Effects In Chimpanzees, Owen D. Jones, Sarah F. Brosnan, Susan P. Lambeth, Mary Catherine Mareno, Amanda S. Richardson, Steven Schapiro Jan 2007

Endowment Effects In Chimpanzees, Owen D. Jones, Sarah F. Brosnan, Susan P. Lambeth, Mary Catherine Mareno, Amanda S. Richardson, Steven Schapiro

Vanderbilt Law School Faculty Publications

Human behavior is not always consistent with standard rational choice predictions. The much-investigated variety of apparent deviations from rational choice predictions provides a promising arena for the merger of economics and biology. Although little is known about the extent to which other species also exhibit these seemingly irrational patterns of human decision-making and choice behavior, similarities across species would suggest a common evolutionary root to the phenomena.

The present study investigated whether chimpanzees exhibit an endowment effect, a seemingly paradoxical behavior in which humans tend to value a good they have just come to possess more than they would have ...


Proprioception, Non-Law, And Biolegal History, Owen D. Jones Jan 2001

Proprioception, Non-Law, And Biolegal History, Owen D. Jones

Vanderbilt Law School Faculty Publications

This Article explores several advantages of incorporating into law various insights from behavioral biology about how and why the brain works as it does. In particular, the Article explores the ways in which those insights can help illuminate the deep structure of human legal systems. That effort is termed "biolegal history."


Evolutionary Analysis In Law: Some Objections Considered, Owen D. Jones Jan 2001

Evolutionary Analysis In Law: Some Objections Considered, Owen D. Jones

Vanderbilt Law School Faculty Publications

This Article appears in a special issue of the Brooklyn Law Review on DNA: Lessons from the Past - Problems for the Future. It first addresses why law needs insights from behavioral biology, and then identifies and responds to a variety of structural and conceptual barriers to such evolutionary analysis in law.


Time-Shifted Rationality And The Law Of Law's Leverage: Behavioral Economics Meets Behavioral Biology, Owen D. Jones Jan 2001

Time-Shifted Rationality And The Law Of Law's Leverage: Behavioral Economics Meets Behavioral Biology, Owen D. Jones

Vanderbilt Law School Faculty Publications

A flood of recent scholarship explores legal implications of seemingly irrational behaviors by invoking cognitive psychology and notions of bounded rationality. In this article, I argue that advances in behavioral biology have largely overtaken existing notions of bounded rationality, revealing them to be misleadingly imprecise - and rooted in outdated assumptions that are not only demonstrably wrong, but also wrong in ways that have material implications for subsequent legal conclusions. This can be remedied. Specifically, I argue that behavioral biology offers three things of immediate use. First, behavioral biology can lay a foundation for both revising bounded rationality and fashioning a ...


Realities Of Rape: Of Science And Politics, Causes And Meanings, Owen D. Jones Jan 2001

Realities Of Rape: Of Science And Politics, Causes And Meanings, Owen D. Jones

Vanderbilt Law School Faculty Publications

This review essay discusses the book A Natural History of Rape: Biological Bases of Sexual Coercion, by Randy Thornhill and Craig Palmer (MIT Press, 2000). The essay builds on work previously appearing in Owen D. Jones, Sex, Culture, and the Biology of Rape: Toward Explanation and Prevention, 87 Cal. L. Rev. 827 (1999) and Owen D. Jones, Law and the Biology of Rape: Reflections on Transitions, 11 Hastings Women's Law Journal 151 (2000).


Sex, Culture, And The Biology Of Rape: Toward Explanation And Prevention, Owen D. Jones Jan 1999

Sex, Culture, And The Biology Of Rape: Toward Explanation And Prevention, Owen D. Jones

Vanderbilt Law School Faculty Publications

For all that has been written about rape, its multiple causes remain insufficiently understood for law to deter it effectively. This follows, in part, from inadequately interdisciplinary study of rape causation. This Article argues that integrating life science and social science perspectives on sexual aggression can improve law's model of rape behavior, and further our efforts to reduce its incidence.

The Article first explains biobehavioral theories of sexual aggression, and offers a guide to common but avoidable errors in assessing them. It then compares a number of those theories' predictions with existing data and demonstrates how knowledge of the ...


Evolutionary Analysis In Law: An Introduction And Application To Child Abuse, Owen D. Jones Jan 1997

Evolutionary Analysis In Law: An Introduction And Application To Child Abuse, Owen D. Jones

Vanderbilt Law School Faculty Publications

For contemporary biologists, behavior - like physical form - evolves. Although evolutionary processes do not dictate behavior in any inflexible sense, they nonetheless contribute significantly to the prevalence of various behavioral predispositions that, in turn, tend to yield observable patterns of behavior within every known species.

This Article explores the implications for law of evolved behavioral predispositions in humans, urging both caution and optimism.

Part I of the Article provides A Primer in Law-Relevant Evolutionary Biology, assuming no prior knowledge in the subject. Part II coins the term evolutionary analysis in law and proposes a model for conducting it. That part demonstrates ...