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Full-Text Articles in Law

Recoiling From Religion, Marc O. Degirolami Jan 2006

Recoiling From Religion, Marc O. Degirolami

Faculty Publications

This is an essay reviewing Professor Marci A. Hamilton's book, GOD VS. THE GAVEL: RELIGION AND THE RULE OF LAW (Cambridge Univ. Press 2005).

Professor Marci Hamilton has written a forceful and obviously heartfelt book that should give pause to committed champions of religious free exercise. She argues convincingly that religious freedom is too often invoked to shield opprobrious and socially harmful activity, and she describes numerous examples of such abuses that make any civilized person's blood run cold. Her avowed aims are to debunk the “hazardous myth” that religion is “inherently and always good for society” and to increase …


Culture In Our Midst, Elaine M. Chiu Jan 2006

Culture In Our Midst, Elaine M. Chiu

Faculty Publications

Culture, like race, class, gender, sexual orientation and wealth is one of many ways in which the law is not neutral. Indeed, culture is a source of law. Yet, as traditional legal positivists have taught us, the law or legal doctrine can prove to be more powerful than culture, often outlasting it. The “mirror image” theory states that the laws of a particular locale reflect the culture of that locale. The law merely serves as enforcement of the common decency, propriety and morality of that culture. Not only is this understanding appealingly simple, it is often invoked by judges and …


Formalism In American Contract Law: Classical And Contemporary, Mark L. Movsesian Jan 2006

Formalism In American Contract Law: Classical And Contemporary, Mark L. Movsesian

Faculty Publications

It is a universally acknowledged truth that we live in a formalist era—at least when it comes to American contract law. Much more than the jurisprudence of a generation ago, today's cutting-edge work in American contract scholarship values the formalist virtues of bright-line rules, objective interpretation, and party autonomy. Policing bargains for substantive fairness seems more and more an outdated notion. Courts, it is thought, should refrain from interfering with market exchanges. Private arbitration has displaced courts in the context of many traditional contract disputes. Even adhesion contracts find their defenders, much to the chagrin of communitarian scholars.

This is …


Law, Ideology, And Strategy In Judicial Decisonmaking: Evidence From Securities Fraud Actions, Michael A. Perino Jan 2006

Law, Ideology, And Strategy In Judicial Decisonmaking: Evidence From Securities Fraud Actions, Michael A. Perino

Faculty Publications

Legal academics and political scientists continue to debate whether the legal, attitudinal, or strategic model best explains judicial decision making. One limitation in this debate is the high-court bias found in most studies. This article, by contrast, examines federal district court decisions, specifically interpretations of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Initial interpretations of the Act articulated distinct liberal and conservative positions. The data compiled here support the hypothesis that the later emergence of an intermediate interpretation was the result of strategic statutory interpretation rather than simply judges acting consistently with their ideological preferences, although there is some …


Triptych: Sectarian Disputes, International Law, And Transnational Tribunals In Drinan's "Can God And Caesar Coexist?", Christopher J. Borgen Jan 2006

Triptych: Sectarian Disputes, International Law, And Transnational Tribunals In Drinan's "Can God And Caesar Coexist?", Christopher J. Borgen

Faculty Publications

Can international law be used to address conflicts that arise out of questions of the freedom of religion? Modern international law was born of conflicts of politics and religion. The Treaty of Westphalia, the seed from which grew today's systems of international law and international relations, attempted to set out rules to end decades of religious strife and war across the European continent. The treaty replaced empires and feudal holdings with a system of sovereign states. But this was within a relatively narrow and historically interconnected community: Protestants and Catholics, yes, but Christians all. Europe was Christendom.

To what extent …


Culture As Justification, Not Excuse, Elaine M. Chiu Jan 2006

Culture As Justification, Not Excuse, Elaine M. Chiu

Faculty Publications

The wide discussion of cultural defenses over the last twenty years has produced very little actual change in the criminal law. This Article urges a reorientation of our approach thus far to cultural defenses and aspires to move the languishing discussion to a more productive place. The new perspective it proposes is justification. The Article asks the criminal law to make doctrinal room for defendants to argue that their allegedly criminal acts are justified acts, and not excused acts, based on the values and norms of their minority cultures. Currently, the criminal law deals with such acts of minority defendants …


The New Religious Prisons And Their Retributivist Commitments, Marc O. Degirolami Jan 2006

The New Religious Prisons And Their Retributivist Commitments, Marc O. Degirolami

Faculty Publications

The rise of the religious, or "faith-based," prison at the turn of the twenty-first century bears witness to the remarkable resilience of religion in shaping the philosophy of punishment. In the last decade, prisons that incorporate religion in various ways have sprouted around the country and there are some indications, though preliminary, inconclusive, and hotly contested, that inmates who participate in religious instruction and “programming” recidivate at lower rates than those who do not. The early success of these programs (and, some say, the preferential treatment accorded to participants in them) has resulted in high demand and long waiting lists. …