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Full-Text Articles in Law

Thug Life: Hip Hop’S Curious Relationship With Criminal Justice, André Douglas Pond Cummings Jul 2009

Thug Life: Hip Hop’S Curious Relationship With Criminal Justice, André Douglas Pond Cummings

Faculty Scholarship

I argue that hip hop music and culture profoundly influences attitudes toward and perceptions about criminal justice in the United States. At base, hip hop lyrics and their cultural accoutrements turns U.S. punishment philosophy upon its head, effectively defeating the foundational purposes of American crime and punishment. Prison and punishment philosophy in the U.S. is based on clear principles of retribution and incapacitation, where prison time for crime should serve to deter individuals from engaging in criminal behavior. In addition, the stigma that attaches to imprisonment should dissuade criminals from recidivism. Hip hop culture denounces crime and punishment in the …


Instream Flows And The Public Trust, Timothy M. Mulvaney Jul 2009

Instream Flows And The Public Trust, Timothy M. Mulvaney

Faculty Scholarship

Empirical evidence suggests that diversion of instream flows for human use, coupled with the potential impacts of changing climatic conditions, is threatening the sustainability of aquatic life. Nonetheless, several states merely prevent stream flows from being reduced below the "7Q10 flow," or the average flow during the driest consecutive seven-day period that has a likelihood of recurring only once every ten years. Overwhelming scientific consensus suggests that 7Q10 merely preserves water quality standards by calculating the concentration of pollutants in point source discharges, without considering water quantity and numerous other core principles of instream management.

The protection of instream flows …


The (Misunderstood) Genius Of American Corporate Law, Robert B. Ahdieh Apr 2009

The (Misunderstood) Genius Of American Corporate Law, Robert B. Ahdieh

Faculty Scholarship

In this Reply, I respond to comments by Bill Bratton, Larry Cunningham, and Todd Henderson on my recent paper - Trapped in a Metaphor: The Limited Implications of Federalism for Corporate Governance. I begin by reiterating my basic thesis - that state competition should be understood to have little consequence for corporate governance, if (as charter competition's advocates assume) capital-market-driven managerial competition is also at work. I then consider some of the thoughtful critiques of this claim, before suggesting ways in which the comments highlight just the kind of comparative institutional analysis my paper counsels. Rather than a stark choice …


Water Scarcity, Conflict, And Security In A Climate Change World: Challenges And Opportunities For International Law And Policy, Gabriel Eckstein Mar 2009

Water Scarcity, Conflict, And Security In A Climate Change World: Challenges And Opportunities For International Law And Policy, Gabriel Eckstein

Faculty Scholarship

Although climate change is expected to have major consequences that affect the global environment in its broadest sense, one of the earliest and most direct impacts will be on Earth’s fresh water systems. While some regions will experience increased precipitation, others will suffer serious scarcity. Among others, consequences are likely to include severe flooding, extreme droughts, and meandering border-rivers. This, in turn, will affect human migration patterns, population growths, agricultural activities, economic development, and the environment. This article explores the impact that climate change will have on regional and global freshwater resources and the resulting legal and policy implications that …


Trapped In A Metaphor: The Limited Implications Of Federalism For Corporate Governance, Robert B. Ahdieh Feb 2009

Trapped In A Metaphor: The Limited Implications Of Federalism For Corporate Governance, Robert B. Ahdieh

Faculty Scholarship

Trapped in a metaphor articulated at the founding of modern corporate law, the study of corporate governance has - for some thirty years - been asking the wrong questions. Rather than a singular race among states, whether to the bottom or the top, the synthesis of William Cary and Ralph Winter’s famous exchange is better understood as two competitions, each serving distinct normative ends. Managerial competition advances the project that has motivated corporate law since Adolf Berle and Gardiner Means - effective regulation of the separation of ownership and control. State competition, by contrast, does not promote a race to …


Troubled Waters: Mid-Twentieth Century American Society On "Trial" In The Films Of John Waters, Taunya Lovell Banks Jan 2009

Troubled Waters: Mid-Twentieth Century American Society On "Trial" In The Films Of John Waters, Taunya Lovell Banks

Faculty Scholarship

In this Article Professor Banks argues that what makes many of filmmaker John Waters early films so subversive is his use of the “white-trash” body—people marginalized by and excluded from conventional white America—as countercultural heroes. He uses the white trash body as a surrogate for talk about race and sexuality in the early 1960s. I argue that in many ways Waters’ critiques of mid-twentieth century American society reflect the societal changes that occurred in the last forty years of that century. These societal changes resulted from the civil rights, gay pride, student, anti-war and women’s movements, all of which used …


Foreword: Poverty Law Issue, Ann Juergens Jan 2009

Foreword: Poverty Law Issue, Ann Juergens

Faculty Scholarship

This Poverty Law Issue provides testimony as to why and how the legal profession, the government, and society can better provide justice for people of small means. Overall, this Poverty Law Issue contributes to understanding how we may ensure that the difficulty of poverty borne by our fellow citizens does not become compounded by injustice. For when justice is compromised for one group, its integrity as a whole may rightly be questioned.


Quasi-Colonial Bodies: An Analysis Of The Reproductive Lives Of Poor Black And Racially Subjugated Women, Khiara M. Bridges Jan 2009

Quasi-Colonial Bodies: An Analysis Of The Reproductive Lives Of Poor Black And Racially Subjugated Women, Khiara M. Bridges

Faculty Scholarship

This Article analyzes the relationship between the struggle for the recognition of Black women's reproductive rights in the United States and the fight for racial justice. Specifically, it argues that the problematization of poor Black women's fertility--evidenced by the depiction of single Black motherhood as a national crisis, the condemnation of poor Black women who rely on public assistance, and the portrayal of their children as an embryonic "criminal class"--ought to be understood as a form of contempt for Black women's reproductive rights. Differently stated, the lack of acknowledgment in legal, political, and popular discourse that motherhood is a legitimate …


Becoming A Citizen: Marriage, Immigration, And Assimilation, Kerry Abrams Jan 2009

Becoming A Citizen: Marriage, Immigration, And Assimilation, Kerry Abrams

Faculty Scholarship

No abstract provided.


Criminal Lying, Prosecutorial Power, And Social Meaning, Lisa Kern Griffin Jan 2009

Criminal Lying, Prosecutorial Power, And Social Meaning, Lisa Kern Griffin

Faculty Scholarship

This article concerns the prosecution of defensive dishonesty in the course of federal investigations. It sketches a conceptual framework for violations of 18 U.S.C. § 1001 and related false-statement charges, distinguishes between harmful deception and the typical investigative interaction, and describes the range of lies that fall within the wide margins of the offense. It then places these cases in a socio-legal context, suggesting that some false-statement charges function as penalties for defendants’ refusal to expedite investigations into their own wrongdoing. In those instances, the government positions itself as the victim of the lying offense and reasserts its authority through …


Happiness And Punishment, John Bronsteen, Christopher Buccafusco, Jonathan Masur Jan 2009

Happiness And Punishment, John Bronsteen, Christopher Buccafusco, Jonathan Masur

Faculty Scholarship

This Article continues our project of applying new findings in the behavioral psychology of human happiness to some of the most deeply analyzed questions in law. When a state decides how to punish criminal offenders, at least one important consideration is the amount of harm any given punishment is likely to inflict. It would be undesirable, for example, to impose greater harm on those who commit less serious crimes or to impose harm that rises to the level of cruelty. Our penal system fits punishments to crimes primarily by adjusting the size of monetary fines and the length of prison …


Book Review, Jennifer L. Behrens Jan 2009

Book Review, Jennifer L. Behrens

Faculty Scholarship

reviewing, Charles J. Ogletree, Jr. & Austin Sarat eds., When Law Fails: Making Sense of Miscarriages of Justice, (2009)


The Law And The Host Of The Canterbury Tales, Frederick B. Jonassen Jan 2009

The Law And The Host Of The Canterbury Tales, Frederick B. Jonassen

Faculty Scholarship

No abstract provided.


Judicial Nullification Of Juries: Use Of Acquitted Conduct At Sentencing, Eang L. Ngov Jan 2009

Judicial Nullification Of Juries: Use Of Acquitted Conduct At Sentencing, Eang L. Ngov

Faculty Scholarship

At trial, defendants are afforded a panoply of rights right to counsel, to proof beyond a reasonable doubt, to confront witnesses, and to exclude inadmissible evidence. However, these rights, except for the right to counsel, disappear at sentencing. In deciding a defendant’s sentence, a court may consider conduct that has not been proven beyond a reasonable doubt and even conduct of which the jury has acquitted the defendant. Consideration of acquitted conduct has resulted in dramatic increases in the length of defendants’ sentences sometimes resulting in life imprisonment based merely on a judge’s finding that a defendant more likely than …


A Few Questions About The Social-Obligation Norm, Jedediah Purdy Jan 2009

A Few Questions About The Social-Obligation Norm, Jedediah Purdy

Faculty Scholarship

Reponse to an article by Gregory S. Alexander, 'The Social-obligation Norm in American Property Law,' in a Special Issue of the Journal on Property Obligation.


Belief In A Just World, Blaming The Victim, And Hate Crime Statutes, Dhammika Dharmapala, Nuno Garoupa, Richard H. Mcadams Jan 2009

Belief In A Just World, Blaming The Victim, And Hate Crime Statutes, Dhammika Dharmapala, Nuno Garoupa, Richard H. Mcadams

Faculty Scholarship

The earliest economic theory of discrimination proposed the subsequently neglected idea of a "vicious circle" of discrimination (Myrdal,1944). We draw on psychological evidence (that people derive utility from believing that the world is just) to propose a behavioral economic model in which the vicious circle envisaged by Myrdal can arise. We demonstrate the power of this approach through an application to the issue of whether and how to justify penalty enhancements for hate crimes against members of disfavored groups. The crucial assumption is that individuals engage in biased inference in order to preserve their Belief in a Just World, thus …


Judicial Independence And Party Politics In The Kelsenian Constitutional Courts: The Case Of Portugal, Sofia Amaral-Garcia, Nuno M. Garoupa, Veronica Grembi Jan 2009

Judicial Independence And Party Politics In The Kelsenian Constitutional Courts: The Case Of Portugal, Sofia Amaral-Garcia, Nuno M. Garoupa, Veronica Grembi

Faculty Scholarship

In this paper we test to what extent the Kelsenian-type of constitutional judges are independent from political parties by studying of the Portuguese Constitutional Court. The results yield three main conclusions. First, constitutional judges in Portugal are quite sensitive to their political affiliations and their political party's presence in government when voting. Second, peer pressure is very relevant. Third, the 1997 reform that was enacted to increase judicial independence has had no robust statistically significant effect.


There Is No Single Field Of Law And Development, Katharina Pistor Jan 2009

There Is No Single Field Of Law And Development, Katharina Pistor

Faculty Scholarship

Let me begin – following Ohnesorge following Trubek and Santos – with the notion that the concepts of “law and development” and “rule of law” are closely intermingled with the process of legal reform in developing countries and the role foreign advisers and multilateral institutions play in that undertaking. Describing the “field” in this fashion reveals that the glue that holds together a set of disparate activities by disparate actors (for under what other circumstances do we assume common ground between family and securities lawyers, or professors and world bankers?) is a shared belief in the virtue of law.


The Hidden Dimension Of Nineteenth-Century Immigration Law, Kerry Abrams Jan 2009

The Hidden Dimension Of Nineteenth-Century Immigration Law, Kerry Abrams

Faculty Scholarship

No abstract provided.


No Future Without (Personal) Forgiveness: Re-Examining The Role Of Forgiveness In Transitional Justice, John D. Inazu Jan 2009

No Future Without (Personal) Forgiveness: Re-Examining The Role Of Forgiveness In Transitional Justice, John D. Inazu

Faculty Scholarship

The role of forgiveness has been much discussed in the literature on transitional justice, but a basic point has been muddled: most acts of forgiveness are inherently personal and cannot be achieved by state actors alone. What I call personal forgiveness is extended by a single human victim who has been harmed by a wrongdoer. Personal forgiveness is distinguishable from three other forms of forgiveness: group forgiveness, legal forgiveness (a form of group forgiveness), and political forgiveness. In the context of transitional justice, I argue that: (1) personal forgiveness is a necessary condition for political forgiveness; (2) group forgiveness (including …


American Law And Transnational Corruption: Is There A Need For Lincoln’S Law Abroad?, Paul D. Carrington Jan 2009

American Law And Transnational Corruption: Is There A Need For Lincoln’S Law Abroad?, Paul D. Carrington

Faculty Scholarship

No abstract provided.


Making Good On Good Intentions: The Critical Role Of Motivation In Reducing Implicit Workplace Discrimination, Katharine T. Bartlett Jan 2009

Making Good On Good Intentions: The Critical Role Of Motivation In Reducing Implicit Workplace Discrimination, Katharine T. Bartlett

Faculty Scholarship

Discrimination in today’s workplace is largely implicit, making it ambiguous and often very difficult to prove. Employment discrimination scholars have proposed reforms of Title VII to make implicit discrimination easier to establish in court and to expand the kinds of situations to which liability attaches. The reform proposals reflect a broad consensus that strong legal norms are crucial to addressing the problem. Yet it is mistaken to assume that strengthening plaintiffs’ hands in implicit discrimination cases will necessarily achieve the long-term goal of reducing its occurrence. This Article brings together several strands of social science research showing that (1) implicit …


Marriage As A Message: Same-Sex Couples And The Rhetoric Of Accidental Procreation, Kerry Abrams, Peter Brooks Jan 2009

Marriage As A Message: Same-Sex Couples And The Rhetoric Of Accidental Procreation, Kerry Abrams, Peter Brooks

Faculty Scholarship

In his dissent in the 2003 case Goodridge v. Department of Health, Justice Robert Cordy of the Massachusetts Supreme Court introduced a novel argument in support of state bans on same-sex marriage: that marriage is an institution designed to create a safe social and legal space for accidental heterosexual reproduction, a space that is not necessary for same-sex couples who, by definition, cannot accidentally reproduce. Since 2003, every state appellate court considering a same-sex marriage case has adopted Justice Cordy's dissent until the recent California Supreme Court decision In Re Marriage Cases. In case after case, courts have held that …


Integration, Reconstructed, Olatunde C.A. Johnson Jan 2009

Integration, Reconstructed, Olatunde C.A. Johnson

Faculty Scholarship

This article examines Parents Involved for the light it sheds on integration's continuing relevance to educational and social equity. Part I examines the story of school integration in Jefferson County and shows how this largely successful metropolitan integration plan challenges claims of racial integration's futility. Part II puts forward the empirical evidence that plaintiffs in Parents Involved used in seeking to establish that school boards have a compelling interest in promoting racial integration and avoiding the harm of racially isolated schools. This part argues that the empirical case for racial integration, while not without limitations, moves beyond stigmatization, psychological harm, …


Marriage As Monopoly: History, Tradition, Incrementalism, And The Marriage/Civil Union Distinction, Suzanne B. Goldberg Jan 2009

Marriage As Monopoly: History, Tradition, Incrementalism, And The Marriage/Civil Union Distinction, Suzanne B. Goldberg

Faculty Scholarship

History and tradition have taken a prominent place as favored rationales for the exclusion of same-sex couples from marriage. Incrementalism likewise has been invoked to suggest that states can permissibly move “one step at a time” to redress the unequal status of same-sex couples, including by creating a civil union/marriage regime instead of providing marriage for all. Yet constitutional jurisprudence is clear that neither longevity nor tradition alone can justify the continuation of a discriminatory rule. This Article asks, then, what work these rationales perform in the marriage/civil union jurisprudence and debate, given their inadequacy from a doctrinal standpoint.

The …


Post-Modern Meditations On Punishment: On The Limits Of Reason And The Virtues Of Randomization, Bernard E. Harcourt, Alon Harel, Ken Levy, Michael M. O'Hear, Alice Ristroph Jan 2009

Post-Modern Meditations On Punishment: On The Limits Of Reason And The Virtues Of Randomization, Bernard E. Harcourt, Alon Harel, Ken Levy, Michael M. O'Hear, Alice Ristroph

Faculty Scholarship

In this Criminal Law Conversation (Robinson, Ferzan & Garvey, eds., Oxford 2009), the authors debate whether there is a role for randomization in the penal sphere - in the criminal law, in policing, and in punishment theory. In his Tanner lectures back in 1987, Jon Elster had argued that there was no role for chance in the criminal law: “I do not think there are any arguments for incorporating lotteries in present-day criminal law,” Elster declared. Bernard Harcourt takes a very different position and embraces chance in the penal sphere, arguing that randomization is often the only way to avoid …


Surrogacy And The Politics Of Commodification, Elizabeth S. Scott Jan 2009

Surrogacy And The Politics Of Commodification, Elizabeth S. Scott

Faculty Scholarship

In 2004, the Illinois legislature passed the Gestational Surrogacy Act, which provides that a child conceived through in vitro fertilization (IVF) and born to a surrogate mother automatically becomes the legal child of the intended parents at birth if certain conditions are met. Under the Act, the woman who bears the child has no parental status. The bill generated modest media attention, but little controversy; it passed unanimously in both houses of the legislature and was signed into law by the governor.

This mundane story of the legislative process in action stands in sharp contrast to the political tale of …