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Representing Justice: Invention, Controversy, and Rights in City-States and Democratic Courtrooms (Yale Law Library Series in Legal History and Reference) Hardcover – January 25, 2011

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Editorial Reviews


"Representing Justice is a fascinating and ambitious study of the iconography of justice and what it reveals about attitudes towards a just society, impartiality and authority, from the Renaissance to the Mexican Muralists. In this engaging and eminently readable book, the authors show how emblems, icons and courthouses vividly embody the fundamentally democratic process of adjudication."—Ruth Weisberg, Roski School of Fine Arts, University of Southern California

(Ruth Weisberg 2010-08-19)

"How did a blindfolded lady holding scales became the ubiquitous image of justice? How have designs and decorations of spaces defined and redefined adjudication? Assembling monumental research, Resnik and Curtis powerfully show how images and buildings reflect and shape local and international justice across human history and how privatized dispute resolution, security concerns, and diminishing community participation erode the ideal and reality of courts' justice."—Martha Minow, Dean and Jeremiah Smith, Jr. Professor, Harvard Law School

(Martha Minow 2010-08-19)

"In this visually stunning and provocative book, Judith Resnik and Dennis Curtis lead us to think in new ways about justice as symbol, justice as reality, and the connections as well as the distance between the two."—Linda Greenhouse, Joseph Goldstein Lecturer in Law, Yale Law School
(Linda Greenhouse 2010-08-20)

"This is a profoundly original and rich book. By looking at the public iconography of justice the book maps the evolution of courts and their relationship with public power and democracy as it has never been done. In this instance, an image is indeed worth a thousand words. Judith Resnik and Dennis Curtis offer us the images and articulate the words."—Miguel Poiares Maduro, Professor and Director of the Global Governance Programme European, University Institute Villa La Pagliaiuola
(Miguel Poiares Maduro 2010-09-13)

“This book is a richly documented study of the iconography of Justice, from Antiquity through its medieval personification as a Cardinal Virtue to the emergence of her figure as an independent icon of a social value.  Tracing the continuing resonance of that figure to the modern court room and in the public imagination, Representing Justice demonstrates the power of an image to embody ideals and, when those ideals are ignored, to stand as an indictment of injustice.”—David Rosand, Meyer Schapiro Professor of Art History Emeritus, Columbia University

(David Rosand 2010-10-18)

“The scope of the book is breathtaking. Through the iconography of justice, Resnik and Curtis chart the history of courts and public justice and compellingly make the case for the central role of adjudication to democracy.  The combination of haunting and often visceral imagery with powerful analysis makes the book both a joy to read and an inspiration.” —Dame Hazel Genn, Dean of the Faculty of Laws, University College London (UCL). 

(Dame Hazel Genn 2010-10-18)

“Resnik and Curtis provide a stunning tour of the iconography and architecture of justice.  Bristling with insights and steeped in learning, Representing Justice casts the relationship of democracy, justice and law in an entirely new light. Both gripping narrative and deep meditation, there is no other book remotely like it.” —Nancy Fraser, Henry A. & Louise Loeb Professor of Philosophy and Politics, New School for Social Research

(Nancy Fraser 2010-10-18)

“This is an extraordinary book. It combines iconography of justice and claims about judges, courts and democracy. With a deep sense of art and law, the reader is guided through the comparative history of judging, courts and their role in society as manifested through the history of art and architecture. The book is a glorious proof that when judges sit at trial they stand on trial.” —Aharon Barak, Former Chief Justice of Israel

(Aharon Barak 2010-10-18)

Representing Justice is a treasure to read and to own.”—Emanuel Margolis, Connecticut Bar Journal
(Emanuel Margolis Connecticut Bar Journal)

"Both Yale Press and authors Resnik and Curtis deserve the highest praise for this monumental undertaking. Highly recommended."—R.J. Steamer, Choice
(R.J. Steamer Choice)

Winner of the 2011 PROSE Award for Excellence in the Social Sciences, as given by the Association of American Publishers
(PROSE Award for Excellence in Social Sciences Association of American Publishers 2012-02-02)

Winner of the 2011 PROSE Award for Law and Legal Studies, as given by the Association of American Publishers
(PROSE Award for Law and Legal Studies, Association of American Publishers 2012-02-02)

Selected as a Choice Outstanding Academic Title for 2011 in the U.S. Politics category.
(Choice Outstanding Academic Title Choice 2012-03-12)

Winner of the 2012 Scribes Book Award, as given by Scribes, The American Society of Legal Writers
(Scribes Book Award Scribes, The American Society of Legal Writers 2012-06-12)

“A more richly conceived catalogue of the development of specialized courthouses from multipurpose buildings and the art that adorns adjudicative space is hard to imagine.”—Michigan Law Review
(Michigan Law Review)

“This is an undertaking of major proportions. It is visionary in its aspirations and impressive in its achievements... It is fascinating, entertaining, and a joy to own… it would be my desert island reading.”—John Brigham, Law & Society Review
(John Brigham Law and Society)

The 2014 Coif Book Award given by the National Order of the Coif.
(Coif National Order of the Coif 2013-11-06)

About the Author

Judith Resnik and Dennis Curtis are law professors at Yale Law School.

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Product Details

  • Series: Yale Law Library Series in Legal History and Reference
  • Hardcover: 720 pages
  • Publisher: Yale University Press (January 25, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0300110960
  • ISBN-13: 978-0300110968
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 1.8 x 11 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,174,569 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Good research, but a little too deep for me.
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