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Inventing American Exceptionalism : The Origins of American Adversarial Legal Culture 1800-1877

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A highly engaging account of the developments—not only legal, but also socioeconomic, political, and cultural—that gave rise to Americans’ distinctively lawyer-driven legal culture

When Americans imagine their legal system, it is the adversarial trial—dominated by dueling larger-than-life lawyers undertaking grand public performances—that first comes to mind. But as award-winning author Amalia Kessler reveals in this engrossing history, it was only in the turbulent decades before the Civil War that adversarialism became a defining American practice and ideology, displacing alternative, more judge-driven approaches to procedure. By drawing on a broad range of methods and sources—and by recovering neglected influences (including from Europe)—the author shows how the emergence of the American adversarial legal culture was a product not only of developments internal to law, but also of wider socioeconomic, political, and cultural debates over whether and how to undertake market regulation and pursue racial equality. As a result, adversarialism came to play a key role in defining American legal institutions and practices, as well as national identity.
Number of Pages: 449.0
Genre: Freedom + Security / Law Enforcement, History
Sub-Genre: History
Series Title: Yale Law Library Series in Legal History and Reference
Format: Hardcover
Publisher: Yale Univ Pr
Author: Amalia D. Kessler
Language: English
Street Date: January 10, 2017
TCIN: 51537039
UPC: 9780300198072
Item Number (DPCI): 248-26-1441

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