Higher Education

Before the Law: An Introduction to the Legal Process, 8th Edition

  • John J. Bonsignore The University of Massachusetts, Amherst
  • Ethan Katsh The University of Massachusetts, Amherst
  • Peter d'Errico The University of Massachusetts, Amherst
  • Ronald M. Pipkin The University of Massachusetts, Amherst
  • Stephen Arons The University of Massachusetts, Amherst
  • Janet Rifkin The University of Massachusetts, Amherst
  • ISBN-10: 0618503455  |  ISBN-13: 9780618503452
  • 640 Pages
  • Previous Editions: 2002, 1998, 1994
  • © 2006 | Published
  • College Bookstore Wholesale Price = $149.25



Before the Law promotes an interdisciplinary approach for introducing students to the purpose and practice of law in our society. Excerpts from recent and classic court cases, as well as material on trends in legal studies come from a range of legal sources, including court opinions; sociological, psychological, and anthropological analyses; historical and philosophical approaches; and literary reflections. Readings cover such current topics as online dispute resolution and protection of personal and property rights in cyberspace; gay marriage; and post-9/11 legislation for fighting terrorism.

Features and Benefits

  • The pedagogy features epigraphs, introductory comments, notes and questions, conclusions, suggested reading, and an index.
  • All six authors are founding members of the American Legal Studies Association, which promotes legal education courses for undergraduates.

Table of Contents

F.1 Before the Law, Franz Kafka
F.2 Dialogue Between a Priest and K., Franz Kafka
F.3 The Problem of Our Laws, Franz Kafka
F.4 Couriers, Franz Kafka
I. Law in Theory and Practice
1. Lawmaking and Precedent: How Judges and Lawyers Reason from Prior Cases
1.1 The Bramble Bush, Karl N. Llewellyn
1.2 State v. Pendergrass
1.3 Joyner v. Joyner
1.4 State v. Black
1.5 State v. Rhodes
1.6 State v. Mabrey
1.7 The Bramble Bush (continued), Karl N. Llewellyn
1.8 State v. Oliver
2. Law and Official Discretion
2.1 The Judging Process and the Judge''s Personality, Jerome Frank
2.2 A Forgery Case
2.3 The Queen v. Dudley and Stephens
2.4 Incarcerated America
3. Law and Values
3.1 The Sorcerer and His Magic, C. Levi-Strauss
3.2 Simple Living and Hard Choices, Maureen A. Flannery
3.3 Cook v. State
3.4 Furman v. Georgia
3.5 The Hanging Judges, Bryan Stevenson
3.6 The End of Executions? The Anti-Death Penalty Movement Is Gathering Force, Linda Lutton
3.7 A Hanging, George Orwell
4. Law and Conflicting Interests
4.1 Why the "Haves" Come Out Ahead: Speculations on the Limits of Legal Change, Marc Galanter
4.2 The Case of the Spoiled Chiles, Laura Nader
4.3 Susquehanna Fertilizer Co. v. Malone
4.4 Madison v. Ducktown Sulphur, Copper & Iron Co.
4.5 Ohio v. Wyandotte Chemicals Corp.
4.6 Living Is for Everyone, Miriam Davidson
5. Law, Status, Wealth, and Power
5.1 Das Capital, "The Working Day," Karl Marx
5.2 American Textile Mfrs. Inst. v. Donovan
5.3 The State, V.I. Lenin
5.4 From Day Clean to First Dark, Kenneth Stampp
5.5 Thornton and Wife v. The Suffolk Manufacturing Company
5.6 Streich v. General Motors Corp.
5.7 Testimony of John Higbie
5.8 Fibreboard Paper Products Corp. v. NLRB
5.9 Testimony of William H. Bywater
5.10 The New Free-Trade Heel, Jeffrey Ballinger
5.11 Service Economy, John J. Bonsignore
6. Law and Popular Will
6.1 The Cheyenne Way, Karl N. Llewellyn and E. Adamson Hoebel
6.2 Law and Authority, Peter Kropotkin
6.3 The Watchman, Franz Kafka
6.4 First National Bank of Boston v. Bellotti
6.5 Proposition 215: The Compassionate Use Act of 1996
6.6 Romer v. Evans
6.7 Goodridge v. Department of Public Health
7. Feminist and Racial Perspectives on Law and Legal Order
7.1 EEOC v. Sears, Roebuck & Co.
7.2 International Union, UAW v. Johnson Controls
7.3 Harris v. Forklift Systems, Inc.
7.4 Demarginalizing the Intersection of Race and Sex, Kimberle Crenshaw
7.5 A Critique of "Our Constitution Is Color-Blind," Neil Gotanda
Suggested Additional Readings
II. Law Enforcement
8. Legal Force
8.1 The Violence of Legal Acts, Robert M. Cover
8.2 Address to the Prisoners in the Cook County Jail, Clarence Darrow
8.3 The Rule of Law Versus the Order of Custom, Stanley Diamond
9. Legal Rights
9.1 The Law Is Terror Put into Word''s, Peter d''Errico
9.2 Excerpt from "Letter from Birmingham Jail," Martin Luther King, Jr.
9.3 Feminism and Porn: Fellow Travelers, Wendy McElroy
10. Law''s Techniques
10.1 Confronting the Complexity of the Policing Function, Herman Goldstein
10.2 Walking the Beat Alone: An African American Police Officer''s Perspective on Petit Apartheid, Jackie Campbell
10.3 Terry v. State of Ohio
10.4 Brown v. Texas
10.5 Florida v. Bostick
10.6 Interstate Travel: Constitutional Challenges to the Identification Requirement and Other Transportation Security Regulations, Todd B. Tatelman
Suggested Additional Readings
III. Lawyers
11. The Profession of Law
11.1 The Temper of the Legal Profession in the United States, Alexis de Tocqueville
11.2 Friendly Fire, David Goodman
11.3 The Big Casino, Roy Grutman and Bill Thomas
11.4 The Price of Law, Gilliam K. Hadfield
12. The Education of Lawyers
12.1 Law School: Caught in the Paradigmatic Squeeze, John J. Bonsignore
12.2 Legal Education and the Reproduction of Hierarchy, Duncan Kennedy
12.3 Diary of a Law Professor, Patricia J. Williams
13. Lawyers and the Adversary Process
13.1 The Ethics of Advocacy, Charles P. Curtis
13.2 The "Fight" Theory Versus the "Truth," Theory Jerome Frank
13.3 "I Have Nothing to Do with Justice," James Mills
13.4 The End of Law, Rex R. Perschbacker and Debra Lyn Bassett
Suggested Additional Readings
IV. The Jury
14. The Jury in a Historical and Cultural Context
14.1 Constitution of the United States, Amendments
15. The Jury as a Political Institution
15.1 Duncan v. Louisiana
15.2 Blakely v. Washington
15.3 Trial by Jury in the United States, Alexis de Tocqueville
15.4 Jury Nullification: The Right to Say No, Alan Scheflin
15.5 Merciful Juries: The Resilience of Jury Nullification, Alan W. Scheflin and Jon M. Van Dyke
15.6 Jury Instructions
15.7 United States v. Dougherty et al.
16. Jury Selection in a Pluralistic Society: The Problem of Gender Discrimination and the Case of Racial Peremptories
16.1 Equality, Law, and Belonging: An Introduction, Kenneth Karst
16.2 A Jury of Her Peers, Susan Glaspell
16.3 Our Juries, Our Selves: The Power, Perception, and Politics of the Civil Jury, Laura Gaston Dooley
16.4 Peremptory Challenges and Affirmative Action: Constitutional Protections for a Jury of Peers, Stephen Arons
16.5 Batson v. Kentucky
16.6 The Id, the Ego, and Equal Protection: Reckoning with Unconscious Racism, Charles R. Lawrence III
16.7 Miller-El v. Cockrell
17. Decline of the Jury: Democracy at Risk?
17.1 Excerpt from The Transformation of American Law, Morton Horwitz
17.2 An Introduction to Tort Reform and Its Effect on the Survival of Trial by Jury, Stephen Arons
17.3 The Not-So-Quiet Revolution, Philip Corboy
17.4 Empirical Research and Civil Jury Reform, Valerie P. Hans and Stephanie Albertson
17.5 Johnson v. Louisiana
17.6 Apodaca et al. v. Oregon
17.7 The Unanimous Verdict, Jeffrey Abramson
Suggested Additional Readings
V. Conflict Resolution
18. Legal Context of Dispute Resolution
18.1 The Transformation of Disputes by Lawyers: What the Dispute Paradigm Does and Does Not Tell Us, Carrie Menkel-Meadow
18.2 Mediation from a Feminist Perspective: Promise and Problems, Janet Rifkin
18.3 The Culture of Battering and the Role of Mediation in Domestic Violence Cases, Karla Fischer, Neil Vidmar, and René Ellis
18.4 Scrapping the Plea-Bargain, Jennifer Smith
19. Dispute Resolution and Community Justice
19.1 The Social Organization of Mediation in Nonindustrial Societies: Implications for Informal Community Justice in America, Sally Engle Merry
19.2 The Development and Impact of Victim-Offender Mediation in the United States, Mark S. Umbreit
19.3 Talking with the Enemy, Anne Fowler, Nicki Nichols Gamble, Frances X. Hogan, Melissa Kogut, Madeline McComish, and Barbara Thorp
20. Public Disputes and Dispute Resolver
20.1 Disputes Together: Conflict Resolution and the Search for Community, Robert M. Ackerman
20.2 Conflict Resolution, Cultural Differences, and the Culture of Racism, Howard Gadlin
20.3 The Calculator: How Herbert Feinberg Determines the Value of Three Thousand Lives, Elizabeth Kolbert
Trading Justice for Harmony, Laura Nader
VI. Cyberspace and the Future of Law
21. Cyberspace and the Future of Law
21.1 Faking It: The Internet Revolution Has Nothing to Do with the NASDAQ, Michael Lewis
21.2 Law and Borders, David R. Johnson and David G. Post
22. Settling Disputes in Cyberspace
22.1 The Impact of Cyberspace on Disputes and Dispute Resolution, Ethan Katsh and Janet Rifkin
23. Protecting Rights in Cyberspace
23.1 Planned Parenthood v. American Coalition of Life Activists
24 . Protecting Property in Cyberspace
24.1 Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer v. Grokster
24.2 Sony Corp. v. Universal City Studios, Inc.
Suggested Additional Readings