ISBN13:978-0521794039 ISBN10: 052179403X This edition has also been released as: ISBN13: 978-0521790826 ISBN10: 0521790824
Summary: What could be more "liberal" than believing in society's responsibility for crime--that crime is less the product of free will than of poverty and other social forces beyond the individual's control? And what could be more "progressive" than the belief that the law should aim for social, not merely individual, justice? This work of social, cultural, and legal history uncovers the contested origins and paradoxical consequences of the two protean co
ncepts in the cosmopolitan cities of industrial America at the turn of the twentieth century.
Summary: What could be more "liberal" than believing in society's responsibility for crime--that crime is less the product of free will than of poverty and other social forces beyond the individual's control? And what could be more "progressive" than the belief that the law should aim for social, not merely individual, justice? This work of social, cultural, and legal history uncovers the contested origins and paradoxical consequences of the two protean concepts in the cosmopolitan cities of industrial America at the turn of the twentieth century. ...show less
Edition/Copyright:03 Cover: Paperback Publisher:Cambridge University Press Published: 05/01/2003 International: No
"Willrich tells an important story; and he tells it very well. The research is rich and deep. This book is one of the best, most insightful, and provocative studies in American legal history that has appeared in recent years. It could serve, in many ways, as a model, in its adroit blending of social and legal history."
--Lawrence M. Friedman, School of Law, Stanford University
"Willrich's account is complex, insightful, and wide-ranging; City of Courts incorporates the history of science, legal history and political history in a narrative that casts new light on crime and punishment in the second largest city in the United States."
--The Times Literary Supplement
"Michael Willrich shares with Fyodor Dostoevsky and Theodore Dreiser an absorbing interest in the ancient riddle of whether crime should be reckoned as an individual or a social failing. He probes that riddle to magnificent effect in City of Courts, freshly illuminating the social, political and cultural landscape of Dreiser's own Chicago. This book announces the arrival of a major new scholar of the progressive era. It also surely heralds a rebirth of interest in that formative period when Americans struggled to define the ideas and institutions appropriate to the myriad challenges of the twentietth century. Indispensable reading for all students of the conflicted and consequential history of modern American liberalism."
--David M. Kennedy, Donald J. McLachlan Professor of History at Stanford University and author of Freedom from Fear: The American People in Depression and War, 1929-1945
"By highlighting the social causes of crime, early twentieth-century Progressive reformers produced a dramatic transformation in American legal institutions. In this splendidly written book, Michael Willrich focuses on a preeminent example of Progressive legal reform--the Chicago Municipal Court--and shows how it exemplified both the complex interaction between social reform and social control and the long-term movement towards bureaucratic justice. It is a brilliant synthesis of social, legal, and institutional history."
--Morton J. Horwitz, Charles Warren Professor of American Legal History, Harvard Law School
Publisher Web Site, July, 2004
View Table of Contents
Part I. Transformations:
1. The price of justice 2. A managerial revolution 3. Rethinking responsibility for a social age 4. Socializing the law
Part II. Practices: Interlude: Socialized Law in Action
5. 'Keep sober, work, and support his family': the court of domestic relations 6. 'To protect her from the greed as well as the passions of man': the morals court 7. 'Upon the threshold of manhood': the boys' court 8. 'Keep the life stream pure': the psychopathic laboratory
Part III. Misgivings:
9. America's first war on crime
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