United States Supreme Court Agenda-setting and Decision-making, 1888-1997
Author: Drew Noble Lanier
Pubpsher: Susquehanna University Press
The present study examines the agenda-setting and the decision-making of the U. S. Supreme Court across a period that encompasses several wars, a Great Depression, a president's attempt to pack the Court, and changes in the Court's jurisdiction. Accordingly, it paints a broad historical picture of the Court, longer than any previous study of those aspects of its business. It provides a wealth of data on the opinions that the Court issued and what issues the Court found most compelling across more than a century of jurisprudence, adding to its value as a research tool.
In this first comprehensive history of the Tennessee Supreme Court, seven leading scholars explore the role played by the Court in the social, economic, and political life of the state. Charting the evolution and organization of the Court (and its predecessor, the Superior Court of Law and Equity), the authors also assess the work of the Court within the larger context of the legal history of the South. Arranged chronologically, this volume covers the period from statehood in 1796 through the judicial election of 1998 and traces the range of contentious issues the Court has faced, including slavery, Reconstruction, economic rights, the regulation of business, and race and gender relations. The authors also outline the Court's relationship with the Supreme Court of the United States and chronicle the achievements of the Court in public and private law, state constitutional law, property law, criminal justice, and family law. The central themes that emerge include the nature of federalism, the search for judicial independence, and the practice of judicial review. As the authors demonstrate, the work of the Tennessee Supreme Court highlights the importance of state courts to the federal system and illuminates the interplay between regionalism and national norms in shaping a state's legal culture. Indeed, as mediator of conflicts between traditional southern values and national economic and social trends, the Court has generally, if sometimes belatedly, adopted national legal standards. Further, while the Court has tended to defer to the state's legislative decision-making process, it has on occasion assumed a more activist role in order to assert individual rights for Tennessee'scitizens. Sponsored by the Tennessee Supreme Court Historical Society, this book is written for anyone interested in Tennessee history in general or legal history in particular. Appendixes include a comprehensive table of cases and biographical information about all the Court's judges.
Volume 1: From the Colonial Years Through the Civil War
Author: G. Edward White
Pubpsher: Oxford University Press
In the first of the three volumes of his projected comprehensive narrative history of the role of law in America from the colonial years through the twentieth century, G. Edward White takes up the central themes of American legal history from the earliest European settlements through the Civil War. Included in the coverage of this volume are the interactions between European and Amerindian legal systems in the years of colonial settlement; the crucial role of Anglo-American theories of sovereignty and imperial governance in facilitating the separation of the American colonies from the British Empire in the late eighteenth century; the American "experiment" with federated republican constitutionalism in the founding period; the major importance of agricultural householding, in the form of slave plantations as well as farms featuring wage labor, in helping to shape the development of American law in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries; the emergence of the Supreme Court of the United States as an authoritative force in American law and politics in the early nineteenth century; the interactions between law, westward expansion, and transformative developments in transportation and communiciation in the antebellum years; the contributions of American legal institutions to the dissolution of the Union of American states in the three decades after 1830; and the often-overlooked legal history of the Confederacy and Union governments during the Civil War. White incorporates recent scholarship in anthropology, ethnography, and economic, political, intellectual and legal history to produce a narrative that is both revisionist and accessible, taking up the familiar topics of race, gender, slavery, and the treatment of native Americans from fresh perspectives. Along the way he provides a compelling case for why law can be seen as the key to understanding the development of American life as we know it. Law in American History, Volume 1 will be an essential text for both students of law and general readers.
This book describes the constitutions of six major federations and how they have been interpreted by their highest courts, compares the interpretive methods and underlying principles that have guided the courts, and explores the reasons for major differences between these methods and principles. Among the interpretive methods discussed are textualism, purposivism, structuralism and originalism. Each of the six federations is the subject of a separate chapter written by a leading authority in the field: Jeffrey Goldsworthy (Australia), Peter Hogg (Canada), Donald Kommers (Germany), S.P. Sathe (India), Heinz Klug (South Africa), and Mark Tushnet (United States). Each chapter describes not only the interpretive methodology currently used by the courts, but the evolution of that methodology since the constitution was first enacted. The book also includes a concluding chapter which compares these methodologies, and attempts to explain variations by reference to different social, historical, institutional and political circumstances.