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Is truth in the law just plain truth – or something sui generis? Is a trial a search for truth? Do adversarial procedures and exclusionary rules of evidence enable, or impede, the accurate determination of factual issues? Can degrees of proof be identified with mathematical probabilities? What role can statistical evidence properly play? How can courts best handle the scientific testimony on which cases sometimes turn? How are they to distinguish reliable scientific testimony from unreliable hokum? The dozen interdisciplinary essays collected here explore a whole nexus of such questions about science, proof, and truth in the law. With her characteristic clarity and verve, in these essays Haack brings her original and distinctive work in theory of knowledge and philosophy of science to bear on real-life legal issues. She includes detailed analyses of a wide variety of cases and lucid summaries of relevant scientific work, of the many roles of the scientific peer-review system, and of relevant legal developments.Read more
- Features original work by a renowned philosopher that applies to real-life evidentiary issues in the law
- Presents a distinctive philosophical approach informed by the classical pragmatist tradition
- Offers a stringent critique of legal probabilism, and specifically of subjective-Bayesian conceptions of legal proof
- Offers a detailed discussion of a wide range of cases illustrating important ideas as well as an understanding of proof of causation and the role of statistical evidence
Reviews & endorsements
Advance praise: "There is tremendous confusion in both law and science (including especially epidemiology) about the proper role of scientific evidence and interpretation of standards of proof in the law. No one has come close to the insight and understanding that should be crystal clear to anyone who reads this perfectly organized collection of essays. Haack alone delves into the historical development of the current confusion and brings her deep understanding of law and philosophy to mark the way out of the confusion. I hope that a copy will be sent to every justice on the US Supreme Court."
Richard W. Wright, Distinguished Professor of Law, IIT Chicago-Kent, College of LawSee more reviews
"Evidence Matters is an exciting collection of insightful essays from a respected authority that will receive attention from both philosophers and legal scholars."
Carl F. Cranor, Distinguished Professor, University of California, Riverside
"… this is a consistently perceptive and erudite volume. Anyone who wishes to be well-informed on matters such as the adversarial system and its relationship to the question for truth, on what "truth" means to lawyers versus what it means to scientists or philosophers, or on whether the law ought even to concern itself with the task of demarcating science from other sorts of inquiry, should read this book and take account of its arguments."
Christopher C. Faille, The Federal Lawyer
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- Date Published: July 2014
- format: Paperback
- isbn: 9781107698345
- length: 446 pages
- dimensions: 229 x 152 x 23 mm
- weight: 0.59kg
- availability: Available
Table of Contents
1. Epistemology and the law of evidence: problems and projects
2. Epistemology legalized: or, truth, justice, and the American way
3. Legal probabilism: an epistemological dissent
4. Irreconcilable differences? The troubled marriage of science and law
5. Trial and error: two confusions in Daubert
6. Federal philosophy of science: a deconstruction – and a reconstruction
7. Peer review and publication: lessons for lawyers
8. What's wrong with litigation-driven science?
9. Proving causation: the weight of combined evidence
10. Correlation and causation: the 'Bradford Hill Criteria' in epidemiological, legal, and epistemological perspective
11. Risky business: statistical proof of specific causation
12. Nothing fancy: some simple truths about truth in the law.
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