Cover

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Frontmatter

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Contents

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Madness and Law: An Introduction

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pp. 1-27

Why conjoin the categories of law and madness? After all, in principle legal institutions work hard to keep these two notoriously slippery terms separate. As a normative matter we posit madness as outside the law—something that should be the obverse of what the rule of law is understood to represent. If madness signals the loss of rationality and a...

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Policing Stories

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pp. 29-48

I will be talking here about the law from the perspective of an outsider— a perilous enterprise, but one in which I take some comfort from recent arguments, especially by Austin Sarat and Paul W. Kahn, that legal culture and discourse need critique from without: that most legal scholarship, however critical of the law, situates itself within the law, in...

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Narrating Nymphomania between Psychiatry and the Law

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pp. 49-77

The setting was a courtroom, the issue was mental competency, the defendant was Marion Taylor, a twenty-two-year-old single woman charged by her grandmother—her parents were deceased—with being a nymphomaniac. Mustering as evidence the fact that she is “infatuated with a married man with whom it is suspected she has illicit...

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"A Situation So Unique That It Will Probably Never Repeat Itself": Madness, Youth, and Homicide in Twentieth-Century Criminal Jurisprudence

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pp. 79-118

In 2000, a court in Connecticut faced the question of whether to try a thirty-nine-year-old man named Michael Skakel as a juvenile for a murder he is alleged to have committed in 1975, when he was fifteen years old.

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The Claims of the Dead: History, Haunted Property, and the Law

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pp. 119-145

Balzac’s novel Colonel Chabert, first published in 1832, opens with a peculiar scene: a soldier who is know to have died in battle most improbably and unexpectedly returns to the office of a lawyer to reclaim his property. Disfigured and unrecognizable, the stranger insists that he is actually the famous colonel and asks the lawyer to help...

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Rethinking Legal Ideals after Deconstruction

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pp. 147-168

In this essay I seek to challenge a reading of “deconstruction,” and postmodernism more generally, that has been proposed by its friends and its foes in legal circles. Deconstruction and postmodern genealogies inspired by Nietzsche are often read to expose the nakedness of power struggles and indeed of violence masquerading as the rule of...

Contributors

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p. 169

Index

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pp. 171-176