masthead

Featured Acquisitions - August 2010

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Unbillable Hours : A True Story  by Ian Graham
New York : Kaplan Pub., c2010
KF225.R63 G73 2010  Balcony

As a fresh hire at a tony Los Angeles firm, newbie attorney Ian Graham got a taste of the good life. More accustomed to the luxury box at Dodger Stadium than to prison walls, a pro bono case opened his eyes to a stark miscarriage of justice-and he decided to risk losing it all to seek freedom for an innocent man convicted of murder.


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Outrageous Invasions : Celebrities' Private Lives, Media, and the Law  by Robin D. Barnes
New York, N.Y. : Oxford University Press, c2010
K3255 .B376 2010  Balcony

In Outrageous Invasions: Celebrities' Private Lives, Media, and the Law, Professor Robin D. Barnes examines the role and nature of privacy in Western democracies. Celebrities are routinely subjected to stalking, harassment, invasion of privacy, and defamation. These occurrences are often violations of their constitutional rights. Professor Barnes addresses growing concerns about the widespread immunity from liability enjoyed by United States tabloid publishers. Outrageous Invasions chronicles these experiences and the legal battles waged by celebrities in both the United States and European Union against a press corps that continuously invades their private lives. Professor Barnes analyzes doctrinal developments in cases from the United States Supreme Court and the High Courts of Europe. These cases demonstrate that American celebrities are entitled to, but not receiving, the same protections as their European counterparts. In Outrageous Invasions, Professor Barnes explains the value of the rights of the individual to democratic nations. She notes the importance of insuring appropriate protection for freedom of expression and associational freedom through meaningful regulation in the instances when speech rights collide with equally important values such as privacy and equality.


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The Making of Legal Authority : Non-legislative Codifications in Historical and Comparative Perspective  by Nils Jansen
Oxford ; New York : Oxford University Press, 2010
K286 .J36 2010  Balcony

Accounts of the nature of legal authority typically focus on the authority of officially sanctioned rules issued by legally recognized bodies - legislatures, courts and regulators - that fit comfortably within traditional state-centered concepts of law. Such accounts neglect the more complex processes involved in acquiring legal authority. Throughout the history of modern legal systems texts have come to acquire authority for legal officials without being issued by a legislature or a court. From Justinian's Institutes and Blackstone's Commentaries to modern examples such as the American Law Institute's Restatements and the UNIDROIT Principles of International Commercial Contracts academic codifications have come to be seen as legally authoritative, and their norms applied as such in courts and other contexts. How have such texts acquired legal authority? Does their authority undermine the orthodox accounts of the nature of legal systems? Drawing on examples from Roman law to the present day, this book offers the first comparative analysis of non-legislative codifications. It offers a provocative contribution to the debates surrounding the harmonization of European private law, and the growth of international law.


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The Regulation of Genetically Modified Organisms : Comparative Approaches edited by Luc Bodiguel and Michael Cardwell
Oxford ; New York, N.Y. : Oxford University Press, c2010
K3927 .R44 2010  Balcony

The regulation of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) continues to generate controversy. On the one hand, they are actively promoted by the biotechnology industry as vital to ensuring food security. Yet, on the other hand, consumer resistance persists, not least in the European Union, and such lack of confidence extends not just to GM food itself but also to the regulatory regime, where legal issues are inextricably linked with economics and politics. This edited collection provides a novel contribution to the ongoing debate, recognizing that the legislative environment is complicated by forces as varied as national public opinion and world trade commitments. The book is divided into four parts. The first of these addresses the influence in this context of both civil society and economic imperatives. The second part is directed more specifically to the measures that have been implemented in the European Union, considering multi-level governance, wider aspects of food law, co-existence with conventional and organic crops, and environmental liability. The third part is comparative in focus, with chapters covering the diverse regimes implemented in Africa, Australia, North America and South America. The book concludes with chapters on world trade and international considerations, including analysis of the Biotech case.


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Masters of the Game : Inside the World's Most Powerful Law Firm by Kim Eisler
New York : Thomas Dunne Books/St. Martin's Press, 2010  1st ed
KF355.W27 E38 2010   Balcony

Veteran legal issues reporter Kim Eisler takes us behind the scenes into mega law firm Williams & Connolly, guiding us on a journey through the many storied cases that have served to shape current policies in public and private sector alike.

For the past twenty years, author and journalist Kim Eisler has covered the law firm of Williams & Connolly, first at American Lawyer Magazine, then for Legal Times and since 1993 as National Editor of Washingtonian Magazine. More than any other writer, Kim has unprecedented and unusual contacts and relationships with the partners, as well as a background knowledge and familiarity with the firm’s history and personnel over the past two decades.

In Masters of the Game, Eisler sets out to demonstrate how the disciples of Edward Bennett Williams went beyond anyone’s expectations and came to occupy key roles in American culture and business. In the last ten years of his life, Williams, the founder of Williams and Connolly, often said he was building not just a law firm but a monument. Masters of the Game is not only about a law firm, but about how the philosophy and practices of this particular law firm have spread out beyond Washington to dominate business, finance, sports and the American psyche itself through its influence with past, present and future political, corporate and media figures.  


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The Presumption of Guilt : The Arrest of Henry Louis Gates, Jr. and Race, Class, and Crime in America by Charles J. Ogletree, Jr
New York : Palgrave Macmillan, 2010  1st ed
E185.615 .O35 2010  Basement

Shortly after noon on Tuesday, July 16, 2009, Henry Louis Gates, Jr., MacArthur Fellow and Harvard professor, was mistakenly arrested by Cambridge police sergeant James Crowley for attempting to break into his own home. The ensuing media firestorm ignited debate across the country. The Crowley-Gates incident was a clash of absolutes, underscoring the tension between black and white, police and civilians, and the privileged and less privileged in modern America. Charles Ogletree, one of the country’s foremost experts on civil rights, uses this incident as a lens through which to explore issues of race, class, and crime, with the goal of creating a more just legal system for all. Working from years of research and based on his own classes and experiences with law enforcement, the author illuminates the steps needed to embark on the long journey toward racial and legal equality for all Americans.


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Parchment, Paper, Pixels : Law and the Technologies of Communication by Peter M. Tiersma
Chicago : University of Chicago Press, 2010
K487.T4 T54 2010  Balcony

Technological revolutions have had an unquestionable, if still debatable, impact on culture and society; perhaps none more so than the written word. In the legal realm, the rise of literacy and print culture made possible the governing of large empires, the memorializing of private legal transactions, and the broad distribution of judicial precedents and legislation. Yet each of these technologies has its shadow side: written or printed texts easily become static and the textual practices of the legal profession can frustrate ordinary citizens, who may be bound by documents whose implications they scarcely understand. Parchment, Paper, Pixels offers an engaging exploration of the impact of three technological revolutions on the law. Beginning with the invention of writing, continuing with the mass production of identical copies of legal texts brought about by the printing press, and ending with a discussion of computers and the Internet, Peter M. Tiersma traces the journey of contracts, wills, statutes, judicial opinions, and other legal texts through the past and into the future. Though the ultimate effects of modern technologies on our legal system remain to be seen, Parchment, Paper, Pixels offers readers an insightful guide as to how our shifting forms of technological literacy have shaped and continue to shape the practice of law today.


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The Transformation of Wall Street : A History of the Securities and Exchange Commission and Modern Corporate Finance by Joel Seligman
New York : Aspen Publishers, c2003
HG4910 .S4 2003   Basement

The principal actor in the transformation of U.S. corporate finance has been the Securities and Exchange Commission, according to Seligman (Washington U. School of Law in St. Louis). In this revised edition of his history of the organization, created in response to corporate governance scandals exposed in the wake of the stock market crash of 1929, he describes the regulatory history of the commission, emphasizing issues concerning the structure of the securities markets.


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The Passport in America : The History of a Document by Craig Robertson
New York : Oxford University Press, 2010
KF4794 .R63 2010  Balcony

In today's world of constant identification checks, it's difficult to recall that there was ever a time when "proof of identity" was not a part of everyday life. And as anyone knows who has ever lost a passport, or let one expire on the eve of international travel, the passport has become an indispensable document. But how and why did this form of identification take on such a crucial role? In the first history of the passport in the United States, Craig Robertson offers an illuminating account of how this document, above all others, came to be considered a reliable answer to the question: who are you? Historically, the passport originated as an official letter of introduction addressed to foreign governments on behalf of American travelers, but as Robertson shows, it became entangled in contemporary negotiations over citizenship and other forms of identity documentation. Prior to World War I, passports were not required to cross American borders, and while some people struggled to understand how a passport could accurately identify a person, others took advantage of this new document to advance claims for citizenship. From the strategic use of passport applications by freed slaves and a campaign to allow married women to get passports in their maiden names, to the "passport nuisance" of the 1920s and the contested addition of photographs and other identification technologies on the passport, Robertson sheds new light on issues of individual and national identity in modern U.S. history. In this age of heightened security, especially at international borders, Robertson's The Passport in America provides anyone interested in questions of identification and surveillance with a richly detailed, and often surprising, history of this uniquely important document.


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The Happy Lawyer : Making a Good Life in the Law by Nancy Levit & Douglas O. Linder
Oxford ; New York : Oxford University Press, 2010
KF300 .L485 2010  Balcony

You get good grades in college, pay a small fortune to put yourself through law school, study hard to pass the bar exam, and finally land a high-paying job in a prestigious firm. You're happy, right? Not really. Oh, it beats laying asphalt, but after all your hard work, you expected more from your job. What gives? The Happy Lawyer examines the causes of dissatisfaction among lawyers, and then charts possible paths to happier and more fulfilling careers in law. Eschewing a one-size-fits-all approach, it shows how maximizing our chances for achieving happiness depends on understanding our own personality types, values, strengths, and interests. Covering everything from brain chemistry and the science of happiness to the workings of the modern law firm, Nancy Levit and Doug Linder provide invaluable insights for both aspiring and working lawyers. For law students, they offer surprising suggestions for selecting a law school that maximizes your long-term happiness prospects. For those about to embark on a legal career, they tell you what happiness research says about which potential jobs hold the most promise. For working lawyers, they offer a handy toolbox--a set of easily understandable steps--that can boost career happiness. Finally, for firm managers, they offer a range of approaches for remaking a firm into a more satisfying workplace. Read this book and you will know whether you are more likely to be a happy lawyer at age 30 or age 60, why you can tell a lot about a firm from looking at its walls and windows, whether a 10 percent raise or a new office with a view does more for your happiness, and whether the happiness prospects are better in large or small firms. No book can guarantee a happier career, but for lawyers of all ages and stripes, The Happy Lawyer may give you your best shot.


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Jury Discrimination : The Supreme Court, Public Opinion, and a Grassroots Fight for Racial Equality in Mississippi by Christopher Waldrep
Athens : University of Georgia Press, c2010
KFM7142 .W35 2010  Balcony

In 1906 a white lawyer named Dabney Marshall argued a case before the Mississippi Supreme Court demanding the racial integration of juries. He carried out a plan devised by Mississippi's foremost black lawyer of the time: Willis Mollison. Against staggering odds, and with the help of a friendly newspaper editor, he won. How Marshall and his allies were able to force the court to overturn state law and precedent, if only for a brief period, at the behest of the U.S. Supreme Court is the subject of Jury Discrimination, a book that explores the impact of the Civil War and Reconstruction on America's civil rights history. Christopher Waldrep traces the origins of Americans' ideas about trial by jury and provides the first detailed analysis of jury discrimination. Southerners' determination to keep their juries entirely white played a crucial role in segregation, emboldening lynchers and vigilantes like the Ku Klux Klan. As the postbellum Congress articulated ideals of national citizenship in civil rights legislation, most importantly the Fourteenth Amendment, factions within the U.S. Supreme Court battled over how to read the amendment: expansively, protecting a variety of rights against a host of enemies, or narrowly, guarding only against rare violations by state governments. The latter view prevailed, entombing the amendment in a narrow interpretation that persists to this day. Although the high court clearly denounced the overt discrimination enacted by state legislatures, it set evidentiary rules that made discrimination by state officers and agents extremely difficult to prove. Had these rules been less onerous, Waldrep argues, countless black jurors could have been seated throughout the nation at precisely the moment when white legislators and jurists were making and enforcing segregation laws. Marshall and Mollison's success in breaking through Mississippi law to get blacks admitted to juries suggests that legal reasoning plausibly founded on constitutional principle, as articulated by the Supreme Court, could trump even the most stubbornly prejudiced public opinion.


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The Immigration Battle in American Courts by Anna O. Law
Cambridge ; New York : Cambridge University Press, 2010
KF4819 .L39 2010   Balcony

This book assesses the role of the federal judiciary in immigration and the institutional evolution of the Supreme Court and the U.S. Courts of Appeals. Neither court has played a static role across time. By the turn of the century, a division of labor had developed between the two courts whereby the Courts of Appeals retained their original function as error-correction courts, while the Supreme Court was reserved for the most important policy and political questions. Law explores the consequences of this division for immigrant litigants, who are more likely to prevail in the Courts of Appeals because of advantageous institutional incentives that increase the likelihood of a favorable outcome. As this book proves, it is inaccurate to speak of an undifferentiated institution called 'the federal courts' or 'the courts', for such characterizations elide important differences in mission and function of the two highest courts in the federal judicial hierarchy.