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Featured Acquisitions January 2010

See also:  Recent Acquisitions in Selected Subject Areas

 

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The Art and Craft of International Environmental Law  by Daniel Bodansky
Cambridge, Mass. : Harvard University Press, 2010
K3585 .B63 2010 c.2  Balcony

International environmental law is often closer to home than we know, affecting the food we eat, the products we buy, and even the air we breathe. Drawing on more than two decades of experience as a government negotiator, consultant, and academic, Daniel Bodansky brings a real-world perspective on the processes by which international environmental law develops, and influences the behavior of state and non-state actors.  In self-contained chapters that offer a clear guide to a complex field, Bodansky answers fundamental questions about how international environmental law works. What role can law play in addressing global environmental challenges such as climate change, ozone depletion, and loss of biodiversity? How do environmental problems come onto the international agenda? What are the obstacles to international cooperation, and what can international environmental law do to address them? How do international rules develop? How are they put into practice and what makes them effective?


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Snitching: Criminal Informants and the Erosion of American Justice  by Alexandra Natapoff
New York : New York University Press, c2009
KF9665 .N38 2009  Balcony

In 2004, an underground rap DVD entitled "Stop Snitching" appeared on the crime-ridden streets of inner-city Baltimore. A rash of "Stop Snitching" t-shirts soon spread through dozens of American cities, including Boston, New York, Pittsburgh, and Milwaukee. The DVD and T-shirts admonished criminal informants—often younger, black men involved in drug dealing—for ratting out their peers in exchange for leniency. In fact, this underground debate reflected a little-known national problem. In waging the wars on drugs and crime, police and prosecutors commonly allow their informants to continue committing crime in their home communities. Alexandra Natapoff argues that this practice has produced few positive results, and instead generates bad information, endangers innocent people, allows criminals to avoid punishment, compromises the integrity of police work, and incites violence and distrust in socially and economically vulnerable neighborhoods.  Snitching is the first comprehensive analysis of the powerful impact of criminal informant use throughout the American legal system and beyond. It exposes the social destruction caused by criminal snitching in some poor, high-crime African American neighborhoods, and how the practice renders the entire penal process more secretive and less fair. Driven by dozens of real life stories and tragedies, Natapoff explores the legal, political, and cultural significance of snitching: from the war on drugs to hip hop music, from the FBI’s mishandling of its murderous mafia informants to the new surge in white collar and terrorism informing. She explains how existing law functions and proposes new reforms. By delving into the secretive world of criminal snitching, Natapoff reveals deep and often disturbing truths about the way American justice really works.


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Courts and Kids: Pursuing Educational Equity Through the State Courts  by Michael A. Rebell
Chicago : University of Chicago Press, 2009
LC213.2 .R427 2009  Basement

Over the past thirty-five years, federal courts have dramatically retreated from actively promoting school desegregation. In the meantime, state courts have taken up the mantle of promoting the vision of educational equity originally articulated in Brown v. Board of Education. Courts and Kids is the first detailed analysis of why the state courts have taken on this active role and how successful their efforts have been.


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Domestic Secrets: Women & Property in Sweden, 1600-1857 by Maria Agren
Chapel Hill : University of North Carolina Press, c2009
KKV517.5 .A94 2009  Basement

Between the seventeenth and nineteenth centuries, women's role in the Swedish economy was renegotiated and reconceptualized. Maria Agren chronicles changes in married women's property rights, revealing the story of Swedish women's property as not just a simple narrative of the erosion of legal rights, but a more complex tale of unintended consequences. A public sphere of influence--including the wife's family and the local community--held sway over spousal property rights throughout most of the seventeenth century, Agren argues. Around 1700, a campaign to codify spousal property rights as anarcanum domesticum, or domestic secret, aimed to increase efficiency in legal decision making. New regulatory changes indeed reduced familial interference, but they also made families less likely to give land to women. The advent of the print medium ushered property issues back into the public sphere, this time on a national scale, Agren explains. Mass politicization increased sympathy for women, and public debate popularized more progressive ideas about the economic contributions of women to marriage, leading to mid-nineteenth-century legal reforms that were more favorable to women. Agren's work enhances our understanding of how societies have conceived of women's contributions to the fundamental institutions of marriage and the family, using as an example a country with far-reaching influence during and after the Enlightenment.


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The Double Helix and the Law of Evidence  by David H. Kaye
Cambridge, Mass. : Harvard University Press, 2010
KF9666.5 .K39 2010  Balcony

Bridging law, genetics, and statistics, this book is an authoritative history of the long and tortuous process by which DNA science has been integrated into the American legal system.  In a history both scientifically sophisticated and comprehensible to the nonspecialist, David Kaye weaves together molecular biology, population genetics, the legal rules of evidence, and theories of statistical reasoning as he describes the struggles between prosecutors and defense counsel over the admissibility of genetic proof of identity. Combining scientific exposition with stories of criminal investigations, scientific and legal hubris, and distortions on all sides, Kaye shows how the adversary system exacerbated divisions among scientists, how lawyers and experts obfuscated some issues and clarified others, how probability and statistics were manipulated and misunderstood, and how the need to convince lay judges influenced the scientific research. Looking to the future, Kaye uses probability theory to clarify legal concepts of relevance and probative value, and describes alternatives to race-based DNA profile frequencies.  Essential reading for lawyers, judges, and expert witnesses in DNA cases, The Double Helix and the Law of Evidence is an informative and provocative contribution to the interdisciplinary study of law and science.


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Cross Purposes : Pierce v. Society of Sisters and the Struggle Over Compulsory Public Education  by Paula Abrams
Ann Arbor : University of Michigan Press, c2009
KF228.S57 A38 2009  Balcony

In 1922, the people of Oregon passed legislation requiring all children to attend public schools. For the nativists and progressives who campaigned for the Oregon School Bill, it marked the first victory in a national campaign to homogenize education---and ultimately the populace. Private schools, both secular and religious, vowed to challenge the law. The Catholic Church, the largest provider of private education in the country and the primary target of the Ku Klux Klan campaign, stepped forward to lead the fight all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court.  In Pierce v. Society of Sisters (1925), the court declared the Oregon School Bill unconstitutional and ruled that parents have the right to determine how their children should be educated. Since then, Pierce has provided a precedent in many cases pitting parents against the state.  Paula Abrams is Professor of Constitutional Law at Lewis & Clark Law School.


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Getting a Poor Return : Courts, Justice, and Taxes by Robert M. Howard
Albany : State University of New York Press, c2009
KF6324 .H69 2009  Balcony

Robert Howard, Associate Professor of Political Science at Georgia State University, examines competing claims and beliefs about the American legal system in the area of tax policy and tax enforcement.


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The Rise of the Uncorporation by Larry E. Ribstein
Oxford ; New York : Oxford University Press, c2010
KF1361 .R53 2010   Balcony

The Rise of the Uncorporation covers the history, law, and finance of unincorporated firms. These "uncorporations" including general and limited partnerships and limited liability companies, are now the dominant business form of non-publicly-traded firms. Through private equity and publicly traded partnerships, uncorporations have emerged as a significant force in the governance of a wide range of the biggest firms. This is the first general theoretical and practical overview of alternatives to incorporation, including ancillary concepts connected with the evolution of these firms, and analysis of likely future trends in business organization. The Rise of the Uncorporation provides a clear and easily understandable theoretical and practical background to this important subject.


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Almighty God Created the Races : Christianity, Interracial Marriage, & American Law  by Fay Botham
Chapel Hill : University of North Carolina Press, c2009
KF511 .B68 2009   Balcony

In this fascinating cultural history of interracial marriage and its legal regulation in the United States, Fay Botham argues that religion--specifically, Protestant and Catholic beliefs about marriage and race--had a significant effect on legal decisions concerning miscegenation and marriage in the century following the Civil War. Botham argues that divergent Catholic and Protestant theologies of marriage and race, reinforced by regional differences between the West and the South, shaped the two pivotal cases that frame this volume, the 1948 California Supreme Court case of Perez v. Lippold (which successfully challenged California's antimiscegenation statutes on the grounds of religious freedom) and the 1967 U.S. Supreme Court case Loving v. Virginia (which declared legal bans on interracial marriage unconstitutional). Botham contends that the white southern Protestant notion that God "dispersed" the races, as opposed to the American Catholic emphasis on human unity and common origins, points to ways that religion influenced the course of litigation and illuminates the religious bases for Christian racist and antiracist movements.


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Law, Politics, & Perception : How Policy Preferences Influence Legal Reasoning by Eileen Braman
Charlottesville : University of Virginia Press, 2009
KF380 .B6 2009  Balcony

Are judges' decisions more likely to be based on personal or legal authority?  The answer, Eileen Braman argues, is both.  Law, Politics, and Perception brings cognitive psychology to bear on the question of the relative importance of norms of legal reasoning versus judges' policy preferences in legal decision making.


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American Original : The Life and Constitution of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia  by Joan Biskupic
New York : Sarah Crichton Books/Farrar, Straus And Giroux, 2009  
KF8745.S33 B57 2009   Balcony

In this first full-scale biography of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, veteran Supreme Court correspondent Biskupic introduces readers to this outspoken conservative jurist.