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The Bluebook: A Uniform System of Citation Spiral-bound – July 1, 1996

ISBN-13: 978-0614199437 ISBN-10: 0614199433 Edition: 16th

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Product Details

  • Spiral-bound: 365 pages
  • Publisher: Harvard Law Review Assn; 16th edition (July 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0614199433
  • ISBN-13: 978-0614199437
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 5.7 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,266,467 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

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37 of 37 people found the following review helpful By Timothy Hadley on August 2, 2000
Format: Spiral-bound
I wouldn't say that the Blue Book is deserving of undying praise, but if you are a law student, a practitioner, or are writing articles for legal publications, you need the latest edition of this book. It sets the standard for citation styles in practitioners' documents and legal publications.
There are reasons, though, that there are several "guides to the Bluebook" in publication. The official Bluebook is only helpful once one has gone through the struggle of becoming familiar with the organization of the book and the style elements that it addresses. Countless times my classmates and I received corrected first year legal writing assignments with "see Bluebook, rule x.xx" written all over. The Bluebook is not written for 1Ls, but every 1L must learn it.
Once you've learned the Bluebook, you find that it's got everything you need. But compared to, say, the American Psychological Association's publications guide, it's agonizing to read.
Some of the 17th edition's changes are, I think, a little odd, see, e.g., Gil Grantmore, The Death of Contra, 52 Stan. L. Rev. 889 (Farber and Chen writing pseudonymously), but that doesn't affect the fact that you need this book if you write in the legal field.
Even so, when I have my copy of the 17th edition, I'll be happy to burn my copy of the 16th edition. On the other hand, maybe I'll keep it as a historic artifact of the days when you could still cite an article as directly contrary to a proposition in the text.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Andrew T. Berkowitz on June 27, 2000
Format: Spiral-bound
Who dares to dispute the importance of the Bluebook? Whether you are a 1L just learning how to navigate its thicket of caselaw abbreviation or a 12th degree master of jurisprudence at ease citing a microformed Congressional hearing from 1964, it shall forever occupy a sacred place among your reference materials. Succinctly put, it is "the" source for all legal citation.
Having been sent on a business trip to a far-away state in the Midwest, I found myself writing case abstracts during the evening hours. Suddenly, I realized I had forgotten my Bluebook. I sat stunned, a cold shiver running down my spine. Although I was pretty sure I knew all the required forms of citation, pretty sure is not considered a viable method within the legal community. I contacted my wife who shipped me my treasured Bluebook by overnight carrier that evening. The wisdom of my investment in additional shipping soon became apparent . . . one of my cites was incorrect (and, believe it or not, I could have sworn it was right!)
Fighting the Bluebook is akin to fighting the aging process - you may win a small skirmish here and there, but you will undoubtedly be defeated in battle. And what a crushing defeat it will be (most likely with numerous witnesses to attest to your skillful tap-dancing all the way up to your demise). Humorous commentary aside, inaccurate citation is deemed by some in the profession as purposeful misrepresentation, outright lying, or worse. This, of course, can lead to disastrous consequences in the form of stinging rebukes, humble apologies, and formal court-imposed sanctions. Don't put yourself in such a position - learn to live and love this book. It will serve you well now and far into the future.
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18 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Donald Smith on May 13, 2000
Format: Spiral-bound
The Bluebook is THE definitive legal citation guide. You cannot be a law student--never mind a lawyer--without knowing it inside and out. As for those who complain about its accessibility--it is true that it doesn't have every single possible example; that's impossible. But on the whole, the Bluebook is very user-friendly and remarkably clear given its comprehensiveness. Note that the 17th Edition will be coming out in July 2000, and will contain NEW RULES!
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38 of 48 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 7, 2003
Format: Spiral-bound
I'm not a lawyer, but I really enjoyed this little gem. What's great about the Bluebook is that it's small enough to keep on top of your toilet yet so voluminous in its rules and regulations that it'll keep you turning pages for weeks. I especially liked rule 18.4.1 entitled "Microform Collections Reproducing Preexisting Materials". I mean really, who knew? Get the book and you'll understand what I'm talking about.
For those of you who enjoy reading shampoo bottles, electric appliance instruction manuals, almanacs, or even raw computer code, I highly recommend this book!
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37 of 47 people found the following review helpful By Wayne Schiess on May 2, 2002
Format: Spiral-bound
I'm weary of the Bluebook.
I am a teacher of legal research and writing--I've been using and teaching the Bluebook for over 10 years. Other than teachers like me, who have to use it, I think the only people who actually use the current Bluebook are law review and journal editors at law schools. That's about it. Everyone else tries to get their citation form right without having to consult the Bluebook. Why?
It's a nightmare to use. Exceptions are presented as rules, with the rule buried where you'd expect an exception. The examples are often baffling, and you must puzzle out how they reflect the rule they are supposedly an example of. And can someone tell me why we need TWO typeface conventions--one for practitioner documents and one for law reviews? Surely those differences began when practitioners used typewriters and law reviews were professionally printed. But it's 2002! We all have word processors now.
(This review refers to the 17th edition published in 2000).
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