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Judicial Policy Making and the Modern State

Judicial Policy Making and the Modern State
How the Courts Reformed America's Prisons

$62.99 (C)

Part of Cambridge Studies in Criminology

  • Date Published: March 2000
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521777346
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$ 62.99 (C)

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About the Authors
  • Between 1965 and 1990, federal judges in almost all of the states handed down sweeping rulings that affected virtually every prison and jail in the United States. Without a doubt judges were the most important prison reformers during this period. This book provides an account of this process, and uses it to explore the more general issue of the role of courts in the modern bureaucratic state. It provides detailed accounts of how the courts formulated and sought to implement their orders, and how this action affected the traditional conception of federalism, separation of powers, and the rule of law.

    • Well-known political scientist and legal scholar join forces to explore the nature and function of the judicial process
    • The first sustained analysis of courts as policymaking institutions
    • A unique way of teaching law by focusing on process - similar to the case-study tradition used by Harvard Business School - rather than looking only at the outcome (appellate court opinions)
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    Reviews & endorsements

    "...judges would do well to read a new book by scholars Malcolm Feeley and Edward Rubin, Judicial Policy Making and the Modern State: How the Courts Reformed America's Prisons. It is an eye-opening account of how federal judges have gone beyond enforcing the Constitution to impose their own policy preferences on state and local government. The authors, respected scholars who approve of judicial policy making, reveal a secret that has long been suspected: Judicial supervision of prisons cannot be squared with federalism, separation of powers or even traditional notions of the rule of law." The Wall Street Journal

    "This is an ambitious project--systematic in its development and sweeping in its scope. Feeley and Rubin stake out controversial ground and defend that ground with empirical data, exhaustive research, and insightful analysis and argument. Their prose is straightforward and efficient, devoid of jargon in the main. While this book will make an important contribution to the academic literature, it also should be accessible to any serious reader of nonfiction who is willing to invest the time and attention required to study such a complex and controversial set of public issues. This is certainly the best book anyone has ever written about the prison cases. It is also the best book anyone has written about judicial policy making." Larry W. Yackle, Boston University Law School

    "Feeley and Rubin have produced a comprehensive study of judicial prison reform in the United States that will prove invaluable to prison scholars." James B. Jacobs, New York University School of Law

    "This important book provides the most comprehensive analysis and critique of the judicially encouraged prison reform movement that began in the late 1960s." Choice

    "This is the kind of book that tempts one to begin reading it anew upon completion because it contains so many interesting and provocative ideas that deserve thoughtful reflection and rexamination." Christopher E. Smith, Judicature

    "This is the kind of book that tempts one to begin reading it anew upon completion because it contains so many interesting and provocative ideas that deserve thoughtful reflection and reexamination." Christopher E. Smith, Judicature

    "Professors Feeley and Rubin have done a significant scholarly service by offering a comprehensive yet readable account of the prison reform litigation revolution. Judicial Policy Making and the Modern State offers an excellent account of the prison reform cases and a provocative assessment of their implications." Donald A. Dripps, Jurist

    "...well written, interesting, nuanced, and erudite." Margo Schlanger, Michigan Law Review

    "...a cogent, intelligent, and unquestionably valuable history of prison reform in America." Anthony M. Bertelli, Journal of Policy Analysis & Management

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    Customer reviews

    02nd Aug 2016 by Jplicea

    Renowned scholars, Malcolm M. Feeley and Edward L. Rubin and their brilliant book, JUDICIAL POLICY MAKING AND THE MODERN STATE, continue to be at the forefront of sociolegal academia - providing some of the most significant research, with a line of intellectual inquiry as old as the republic, regarding the impact the judiciary may have in relation to social change. Feeley and Rubin reinforce the University of California, Berkeley long held and undisputed status as the most prestigious public institution of higher learning in the world and with out a doubt one of the worlds leading authorities in Social Justice academia.

    Review was not posted due to profanity


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    Product details

    • Date Published: March 2000
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521777346
    • length: 508 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 152 x 29 mm
    • weight: 0.74kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. Introduction
    Part I. The Case of Judicial Prison Reform:
    2. An overview of judicial prison reform
    3. Two classic prison reform cases: Arkansas and Texas
    4. Three variations on a theme: the Colorado penitentiary, the Santa Clara county jails and Marion penitentiary
    Part II. The Theory of Judicial Policy-Making:
    5. Defining the problem, identifying the goal, and rejecting the principle of federalism
    6. Creating doctrine, choosing solutions and transforming the rule of law
    7. Implementing the solution, muddling through and ignoring the separation of powers principle
    8. Conclusion
    9. CODA: assessing the successes of judicial prison reform.

  • Authors

    Malcolm M. Feeley, University of California, Berkeley

    Edward L. Rubin, University of California, Berkeley

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