How Law Knows

9780804755252: Hardback
Release Date: 8th November 2006

Dimensions: 152 x 229

Number of Pages: 224

Series The Amherst Series in Law, Jurisprudence

Stanford University Press

How Law Knows

The essays assembled in How Law Knows provide a sample of the diversity, responsiveness, and influence that law's knowledge practices have on legal outcomes and the world beyond law.
Hardback / £52.00

When citizens think about law's ways of knowing and about how legal officials gather information, assess factual claims, and judge people and situations, they are often confused by the seemingly arcane and constrained quality of the information-gathering, fact-evaluating procedures that legal officials employ or impose. Yet law's ways of knowing as varied as are the institutions and officials who populate any legal system. From the rules of evidence to the technologies of risk management, from the practices of racial profiling to the development of trade knowledge, from the generation of independent knowledge practices to law's dependence on outside expertise, even a brief survey shows that law knows in many different ways, that its knowledge practices are contingent and responsive to context, and that they change over time.

Austin Sarat is William Nelson Cromwell Professor of Jurisprudence and Political Science and Five College Fortieth Anniversary Professor at Amherst College. Lawrence Douglas is Professor of Law, Jurisprudence & Social Thought at Amherst College. Martha Merrill Umphrey is Associate Professor of Law, Jurisprudence & Social Thought at Amherst College.

"How Law Knows is a useful and interesting collection addressing law's ways of knowing. The authors reveal that the establishment and organized use of legal facts is varied, historical, and amenable to a rich and diverse set of methods of inquiry."

Jon Goldberg-Hiller, University of Hawaii

"This work raises new questions while also reexamining standard socio-legal issues in refreshing ways. The result is a rich and innovative look at the routines of truth seeking and fact finding."

Patricia Ewick
Clark University