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Rape and the Culture of the Courtroom : Critical American Series - Andrew E. Taslitz

Rape and the Culture of the Courtroom

Critical American Series

Paperback

Published: 1st June 1999
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InRape and the Culture of the Courtroom, Taslitz (a former prosecutor) is concerned to show how and why police, prosecutors, judges, and defense attorneys use their discretion to circumvent legal reforms in rape law.-HypatiaRape law reform has been a stunning failure. Defense lawyers persist in emphasizing victims' characters over defendants' behavior. Reform's goals of increasing rape report and conviction rates have generally not been achieved. InRape and the Culture of the Courtroom, Andrew Taslitz locates the cause of rape reform failure in the language lawyers use, and the cultural stories upon which they draw to dominate rape victims in the courtroom.Cultural stories about rape, Taslitz argues, such as the provocatively dressed woman "asking for it," are at the root of many unconscious prejudices that determine jury views. He connects these stories with real-life examples, such as the Mike Tyson and Glen Ridge rape trials, to show how rape stereotypes are used by defense lawyers to gain acquittals for their clients.Building on Deborah Tannen's pathbreaking research on the differences between male and female speech, Taslitz also demonstrates how word choice, tone, and other lawyers' linguistic tactics work to undermine the confidence and the credibility of the victim, weakening her voice during the trial. Taslitz provides politically realistic reform proposals, consistent with feminist theories of justice, which promise to improve both the adversary system in general and the way that the system handles rape cases.

"In Rape and the Culture of the Courtroom, Taslitz (a former prosecutor) is concerned to show how and why police, prosecutors, judges, and defense attorneys use their discretion to circumvent legal reforms in rape law." --Hypatia

Acknowledgments
Note to the Reader
Introductionp. 1
Patriarchal Storiesp. 13
Cultural Rape Narrativesp. 15
Cultural Rape Narratives in the Courtroomp. 44
A Fair Fightp. 58
Lawyers' Language in the Courtroomp. 65
Gendered Languagep. 67
Lawyers' Language and the Rape Trialp. 81
Feminist Evidence Lawp. 101
Market Failurep. 103
Group Voicesp. 134
Conclusionp. 152
Notesp. 157
Indexp. 205
About the Authorp. 210
Table of Contents provided by Blackwell. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780814782309
ISBN-10: 0814782302
Series: Critical American Series
Audience: Professional
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 232
Published: 1st June 1999
Publisher: New York University Press
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 23.5 x 15.88  x 1.91
Weight (kg): 0.32