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This Is Not Civil Rights (13 Edition)

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This Is Not Civil Rights (13 Edition) Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

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Publisher Comments:

Since at least the time of Tocqueville, observers have noted that Americans draw on the language of rights when expressing dissatisfaction with political and social conditions. As the United States confronts a complicated set of twenty-first-century problems, that tradition continues, with Americans invoking symbolic events of the founding era to frame calls for change. Most observers have been critical of such andldquo;rights talk.andrdquo; Scholars on the left worry that it limits the range of political demands to those that can be articulated as legally recognized rights, while conservatives fear that it creates unrealistic expectations of entitlement.
and#160;
Drawing on a remarkable cache of Depression-era complaint letters written by ordinary Americans to the Justice Department, George I. Lovell challenges these common claims. Although the letters were written prior to the emergence of the modern civil rights movementandmdash;which most people assume is the origin of rights talkandmdash;many contain novel legal arguments, including expansive demands for new entitlements that went beyond what authorities had regarded as legitimate or required by law. Lovell demonstrates that rights talk is more malleable and less constraining than is generally believed. Americans, he shows, are capable of deploying idealized legal claims as a rhetorical tool for expressing their aspirations for a more just society while retaining a realistic understanding that the law often falls short of its own ideals.

About the Author

George I. Lovell is associate professor of political science at the University of Washington. He is the author of Legislative Deferrals.

Table of Contents

Preface

Acknowledgments

Chapter 1.and#160;Voices from Peoria

Chapter 2.and#160;The CRSand#8217;s Legal and Political Strategies for Improving Civil Rights Protections

Chapter 3.and#160;Dead Dogs, Bad Divorces, and, Dope-Peddling Sheriffs: The Subject Matter of Civil Rights Complaint Letters

Chapter 4.and#160;The Common Place of Lawyering: Using Legal and Constitutional Arguments to Support Novel Civil Rights Claims

Chapter 5.and#160;Underlying Commitments of Rights Claiming: Extralegal Persuasive Claims and Citizen Understandings of Law

Chapter 6.and#160;In Defense of Extravagant Rights Talk

Appendix: Notes on the Archival Sources

Notes

Bibliography

Index

Product Details

ISBN:
9780226494043
Author:
Lovell, George I.
Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
Subject:
Civil Rights
Subject:
Politics-United States Politics
Edition Description:
Paperback
Series:
Chicago Series in Law and Society
Publication Date:
20121031
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Language:
English
Illustrations:
1 halftone
Pages:
280
Dimensions:
9 x 6 in

Related Subjects

History and Social Science » Law » Civil Liberties and Human Rights
History and Social Science » Law » General
History and Social Science » Politics » United States » Politics
History and Social Science » US History » 20th Century » General

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