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Featured Acquisitions - January 2017

 

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My Own Words by Ruth Bader Ginsburg with Mary Hartnett and Wendy W. Williams
New York: Simon & Schuster, 2016
Balcony KF8745.G56 A3 2016

The first book from Ruth Bader Ginsburg since becoming a Supreme Court Justice in 1993--a witty, engaging, serious, and playful collection of writings and speeches from the woman who has had a powerful and enduring influence on law, women's rights, and popular culture. My Own Words offers Justice Ginsburg on wide-ranging topics, including gender equality, the workways of the Supreme Court, being Jewish, law and lawyers in opera, and the value of looking beyond US shores when interpreting the US Constitution. Throughout her life Justice Ginsburg has been (and continues to be) a prolific writer and public speaker. This book's sampling is selected by Justice Ginsburg and her authorized biographers Mary Hartnett and Wendy W. Williams. Justice Ginsburg has written an introduction to the book, and Hartnett and Williams introduce each chapter, giving biographical context and quotes gleaned from hundreds of interviews they have conducted. This is a fascinating glimpse into the life of one of America's most influential women.


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Water Tossing Boulders: How a Family of Chinese Immigrants Led the First Fight to Desegregate Schools in the Jim Crow South by Adrienne Berard
Boston: Beacon Press, 2016
Balcony KF228.L86 B47 2016

A generation before Brown v. Board of Education struck down America’s separate but equal doctrine, one Chinese family and an eccentric Mississippi lawyer fought for desegregation in one of the greatest legal battles never told. On September 15, 1924, Martha Lum and her older sister Berda were barred from attending middle school in Rosedale, Mississippi. The girls were Chinese American and considered by the school to be colored; the school was for whites. This event would lead to the first US Supreme Court case to challenge the constitutionality of racial segregation in Southern public schools, an astonishing thirty years before the landmark Brown v. Board of Education decision. … By confronting the separate but equal doctrine, the Lum family fought for the right to educate Chinese Americans in the white schools of the Jim Crow South. Using their groundbreaking lawsuit as a compass, Berard depicts the complicated condition of racial otherness in rural Southern society. In a sweeping narrative that is both epic and intimate, Water Tossing Boulders evokes a time and place previously defined by black and white, a time and place that, until now, has never been viewed through the eyes of a forgotten third race. In vivid prose, the Mississippi Delta, an empire of cotton and a bastion of slavery, is reimagined to reveal the experiences of a lost immigrant community. Through extensive research in historical documents and family correspondence, Berard illuminates a vital, forgotten chapter of America’s past and uncovers the powerful journey of an oppressed people in their struggle for equality.


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Why They Do It: Inside the Mind of the White-Collar Criminal by Eugene Soltes
New York: Public Affairs, 2016
Basement HV6768 .S65 2016

Perplexed as to why people who seemingly had it all would risk it all just to acquire more, Eugene Soltes began an investigation into the mind of the corporate criminal. His journey into this netherworld included intense and lengthy personal interactions with the famous (such as Bernie Madoff, executives from Enron, Worldcom, Tyco, and McKinsey) as well as those who are lesser known--all of whom traded places of privilege for prison and disgrace. Based on intimate details from personal visits, interviews, letters and phone calls and fascinating psychological, sociological and historical insight, Why They Do It is a breakthrough look at a modern phenomenon. Soltes pushes beyond the explanation that these criminals were driven by psychological aberration, overconfidence, or excessive greed and ambition. Nor did they rationally calculate the costs and benefits of their crimes. Instead, these people were working in a "grey zone"--stepping over the line, often without careful calculation, letting their intuition and gut feel for what is right and wrong elude them. Based on innovative research and extended contact with close to 50 former executives--many of whom have never spoken about their crimes--Soltes provides insights such as why some saw the immediate effects of misconduct as positive; why executives often don't feel the emotions--angst, guilt, shame--most people would expect; and how acceptable norms in the business community can differ from those of the broader society. No one book has provided a complete picture of this phenomenon of the white-collar criminal. Why They Do It is an original, provocative, and compelling analysis of a complex disturbing trend that will, with the ever-increasing globalization of business, continue to worsen.


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Rules for a Flat World: Why Humans Invented Law and How to Reinvent it for a Complex Global Economy by Gillian K. Hadfield
New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 2017
Balcony K487.E3 H335 2017

If you want a simple representation of the twentieth-century economy, picture a large corporation as a box. To do the same for today's economy, though, we need to blow up that box and reassemble the pieces into a network. The network is global, stretching across the planet untethered to political and legal boundaries. This is the economy of the twenty-first century, characterized by ever-expanding global supply chains and communication systems. In 2005, Thomas Friedman reduced this phenomenon to one phrase, the title of his massively successful book: The World is Flat. Of course, the phrase is misleading. The world may be getting flatter in some places, but there are still many factors that tilt the odds in favor of some locations over others. Law and economics professor Gillian Hadfield picks up where Friedman's book left off, by peeling back the technological layer to look at what lies beneath-our legal infrastructure-and argues that the outdated legal system is, in fact, largely responsible for our still-slanted world. Put simply, the law and legal methods on which we currently rely have failed to evolve along with technology. Hadfield argues that not only are these systems too slow, costly, and localized to support economic complexity, they also fail to address looming challenges such as global warming, poverty, and oppression in developing countries. The answer, however, is not the one critics usually reach for-to have less of it. Through a sweeping review of law and the world economy over thousands of years, Hadfield makes the case for building a legal environment that does more of what we need it to do and less of what we don't. Hadfield offers, in engaging and accessible prose, a model for a more market- and globally-oriented legal system. Combining an impressive grasp of economic globalization with an ambitious re-envisioning of our global legal system, Rules for a Flat World will transform our understanding of how to best achieve a more sustainable and vibrant global economy.


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The Taming of Free Speech: America's Civil Liberties Compromise by Laura Weinrib
Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press, 2016
Balcony KF4772 .W44 2016

Judicial enforcement of the Bill of Rights is a defining feature of American constitutional democracy, yet in the first half of the twentieth century, neither freedom of speech nor court-centered constitutionalism commanded broad-based consensus. The Taming of Free Speech explains how lawyers and activists convinced Americans to entrust their civil liberties to the courts. When class war shook the nation's institutions, labor radicals within the American Civil Liberties Union claimed a right to agitate through organized economic pressure--a right of workers to picket, boycott, and strike. Over time, they hitched those commitments to a conservative constitutional tradition that valorized individual rights. At the height of the New Deal, the corporate bar and its clients reluctantly accepted judicial deference to social and economic regulation. In place of property rights, they redeployed the First Amendment to shield business interests from the intrusive reach of the state. In an age of totalitarianism abroad and administrative discretion at home, a powerful Bill of Rights protected conservatives as well as radicals, industry as well as labor.


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John Lennon vs. the USA: the Inside Story of the Most Bitterly Contested and Influential Deportation Case in United States History by Leon Wildes
Chicago, Illinois: American Bar Association
Balcony KF228.L47 W55 2016

New York immigration attorney Leon Wildes tells the incredible story of this landmark case --John Lennon vs. The USA --- that set up a battle of wills between John Lennon, Yoko Ono, and President Richard Nixon. Although Wildes did not even know who John Lennon and Yoko Ono were when he was originally retained by them, he developed a close relationship with them both during the eventual five-year period while he represented them and thereafter.


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The Fix: How Nations Survive and Thrive in a World in Decline by Jonathan Tepperman
New York: Tim Duggan Books, 2016
Basement HD87 .T47 2016

The Fix identifies ten pervasive and seemingly impossible challenges—including immigration reform, economic stagnation, political gridlock, corruption, and Islamist extremism—and shows that, contrary to the general consensus, each has a solution, and not merely a hypothetical one. In his close analysis of government initiatives as diverse as Brazil’s Bolsa Família program, Indonesia’s campaign against radicalism, Canada’s early embrace of multiculturalism, and Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s efforts to prevent another 9/11, Tepperman captures the moments in time which reveal the broadly applicable measures which can boost and buttress equality, incomes, cooperation, and cohesion in wildly diverse societies. He flips conventional political wisdom on its head, showing, for example, how much the U.S. Congress could learn about compromise and conciliation from its counterpart in Mexico. Tepperman has traveled the world to write this book, conducting more than a hundred interviews with the people behind the policies. Meticulously researched and deeply reported, The Fix presents practical advice for problem-solvers of all stripes, and stands as a necessary corrective to the hand-wringing and grim prognostication that dominates the news, making a data-driven case for optimism in a time of crushing pessimism.


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The Ethics of Influence: Government in the Age of Behavioral Science by AUTHOR_HERE
New York, NY: Cambridge University Press, 2016
Balcony K378 .S86 2016

In recent years, 'Nudge Units' or 'Behavioral Insights Teams' have been created in the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, and other nations. All over the world, public officials are using the behavioral sciences to protect the environment, promote employment and economic growth, reduce poverty, and increase national security. In this book, Cass R. Sunstein, the eminent legal scholar and best-selling co-author of Nudge, breaks new ground with a deep yet highly readable investigation into the ethical issues surrounding nudges, choice architecture, and mandates, addressing such issues as welfare, autonomy, self-government, dignity, manipulation, and the constraints and responsibilities of an ethical state. Complementing the ethical discussion, The Ethics of Influence contains a wealth of new data on people's attitudes towards a broad range of nudges, choice architecture, and mandates.


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Fractional Freedoms: Slavery, Intimacy, and Legal Mobilization in Colonial Lima, 1600-1700 by Michelle A. McKinley
New York, NY: Cambridge University Press, 2016
Basement KHQ2920.P44 M35 2016

Fractional Freedoms explores how thousands of slaves in colonial Peru were able to secure their freedom, keep their families intact, negotiate lower self-purchase prices, and arrange transfers of ownership by filing legal claims. Through extensive archival research, Michelle A. McKinley excavates the experiences of enslaved women whose historical footprint is barely visible in the official record. She complicates the way we think about life under slavery and demonstrates the degree to which slaves were able to exercise their own agency, despite being ensnared by the Atlantic slave trade. Enslaved women are situated as legal actors who had overlapping identities as wives, mothers, mistresses, wet-nurses and day-wage domestics, and these experiences within the urban working environment are shown to condition their identities as slaves. Although the outcomes of their lawsuits varied, Fractional Freedoms demonstrates how enslaved women used channels of affection and intimacy to press for liberty and prevent the generational transmission of enslavement to their children.


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Fish Raincoats: A Woman Lawyer's Life by Barbara Babcock
New Orleans, Louisiana: Quid Pro Books, 2016
Balcony KF373.B23 A3 2016

The life and times of a trailblazing feminist in American law. The first female Stanford law professor was also first director of the District of Columbia Public Defender Service, one of the first women to be an Assistant Attorney General of the United States, and the biographer of California’s first woman lawyer, Clara Foltz. Survivor, pioneer, leader, and fervent defender of the powerless and colorful mobsters alike, Barbara Babcock led by example and by the written word — and recounts her part of history in this candid and personal memoir.