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The Mirror of Justice : Literary Reflections of Legal Crises - Theodore Ziolkowski

The Mirror of Justice

Literary Reflections of Legal Crises

Paperback Published: 23rd March 2003
ISBN: 9780691114705
Number Of Pages: 336

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This book studies major works of literature from classical antiquity to the present that reflect crises in the evolution of Western law: the move from a prelegal to a legal society in "The Eumenides," the Christianization of Germanic law in "Njal's Saga," the disenchantment with medieval customary law in "Reynard the Fox," the reception of Roman law in a variety of Renaissance texts, the conflict between law and equity in "Antigone" and "The Merchant of Venice," the eighteenth-century codification controversy in the works of Kleist, the modern debate between "pure" and "free" law in Kafka's "The Trial" and other fin-de-siecle works, and the effects of totalitarianism, the theory of universal guilt, and anarchism in the twentieth century.

Using principles from the anthropological theory of legal evolution, the book locates the works in their legal contexts and traces through them the gradual dissociation over the centuries of law and morality. It thereby associates and illuminates these masterpieces from an original point of view and contributes a new dimension to the study of literature and law.

In contrast to prevailing adherents of Law-and-Literature, this book professes Literature-and-Law, in which the emphasis is historical rather than theoretical, substantive rather than rhetorical, and literary rather than legal. Instead of adducing the literary work to illustrate debates about modern law, this book consults the history of law as an essential aid to the understanding of the literary text and its conflicts.

Industry Reviews

Winner of the 1998 Christian Gauss Award, Phi Beta Kappa "An incisive and useful study... Theodore Ziolkowski has brought his broad interdisciplinary knowledge and discerning critical skills to [this] wide-ranging study."--Robert Hauptman, World Literature Today "A sweeping and intriguing handbook of law, literature, and history."--Robert F. Barsky, Literary Research/Recherche Litteraire "Informed and original... This challenging and engaging study has much to offer scholars, teachers, and students."--Choice

Introductionp. 3
The Birth of Justice from the Spirit of Tragedyp. 20
The Ambivalence toward Pagan Lawp. 42
The Role of Romep. 63
The Disenchantment with Customary Lawp. 74
The Reception of Roman Law in Germanyp. 98
European Variationsp. 130
Law and Equity Ip. 144
Law and Equity IIp. 163
The Attractions of Codificationp. 187
The Modern Crisis of Lawp. 215
Twentieth-Century Legal Evolutionsp. 241
Notesp. 273
Indexp. 315
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780691114705
ISBN-10: 0691114706
Series: Literary Reflections of Legal Crises
Audience: Tertiary; University or College
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 336
Published: 23rd March 2003
Publisher: Princeton University Press
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 22.86 x 15.24  x 2.54
Weight (kg): 0.48