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A Critical Introduction to Law and Literature
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 (ISBN-13: 9780511271076)

Despite their apparent separation, law and literature have been closely linked fields throughout history. Linguistic creativity is central to the law, with literary modes such as narrative and metaphor infiltrating legal texts. Equally, legal norms of good and bad conduct, of identity and human responsibility, are reflected or subverted in literature's engagement with questions of law and justice. Law seeks to regulate creative expression, while literary texts critique and sometimes openly resist the law. Kieran Dolin introduces this interdisciplinary field, focusing on the many ways that law and literature have addressed and engaged with each other. He charts the history of the shifting relations between the two disciplines, from the open affiliation between literature and law in the sixteenth-century Inns of Court to the less visible links of contemporary culture. Originally published in 2007, this book provides an accessible guide to one of the most exciting areas of interdisciplinary scholarship.

• A historical study which connects changes in law with changes in culture • Includes a chapter on post-colonial literature and law • Covers the impact of laws such as censorship on literature as well as the literary qualities of legal texts


Preface; Introduction: law and literature: walking the boundary with Robert Frost and the Supreme Court; Part I. Eminent Domains: The Text of the Law and the Law of the Text: 1. Law's language; 2. Literature under the law; Part II. Law and Literature in History: 3. Renaissance humanism and the new culture of contract; 4. Crime and punishment in the eighteenth century; 5. The woman question in Victorian England; 6. The Common Law and the ache of modernism; 7. Rumpole in Africa: law, literature and post-colonial society; 8. Race and representation in contemporary America; Conclusion; Bibliography.


Review of the hardback: 'A Critical Introduction to Law and Literature is a welcome publication …' International Journal for the Semiotics of Law

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