Cause Lawyers and Social Movements

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Cause Lawyers and Social Movements seeks to reorient scholarship on cause lawyers, inviting scholars to think about cause lawyering from the perspective of those political activists with whom cause lawyers work and whom they seek to serve. It demonstrates that while all cause lawyering cuts against the grain of conventional understandings of legal practice and professionalism, social movement lawyering poses distinctively thorny problems.

The editors and authors of this volume explore the following questions: What do cause lawyers do for, and to, social movements? How, when, and why do social movements turn to and use lawyers and legal strategies? Does their use of lawyers and legal strategies advance or constrain the achievement of their goals? And, how do movements shape the lawyers who serve them and how do lawyers shape the movements?

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"This work examines the unique position of lawyers committed both to profession and to cause. The wide variety of social movements described in the book offers a natural setting for asking how politically committed collective clients shape the lawyer's role and the tension this poses for professional responsibility."—Richard Abel, UCLA School of Law

"Cause Lawyers and Social Movements presents a rich range of case studies of the interaction between lawyering and social movement."—Lucie White, Harvard Law School

"Together with their previous collaborative works on cause lawyers, Austin Sarat and Stuart Scheingold have taught us a great deal about the utility of lawyers and legal rights for social and political change, usefully highlighted the political significance of studying the practices of public interest lawyers in a politics of rights, and helped set an agenda for exciting and politically relevant research."—The Law and Politics Book Review

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780804753616
  • Publisher: Stanford University Press
  • Publication date: 6/5/2006
  • Edition description: 1
  • Pages: 360
  • Sales rank: 423,484
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Austin Sarat is William Nelson Cromwell Professor of Jurisprudence and Political Science and Five College Fortieth Anniversary Professor at Amherst College. Stuart A. Scheingold is Professor Emeritus of Political Science at the University of Washington. Together, Sarat and Scheingold are the authors of Something to Believe In: Politics, Professionalism, and Cause Lawyering (Stanford University Press, 2004).

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Table of Contents

What cause lawyers do for, and to, social movements : an introduction 1
Sect. I The life cycle of movements and movement lawyering
Retrenchment ... and resurgence? : mapping the changing context of movement layering in the United States? 37
The profession, the grassroots and the elite : cause lawyering for civil rights and freedom in the direct action era 60
Cause lawyers in the first wave of same sex marriage litigation 84
Cause lawyering and political advocacy : moving law on behalf of Central American refugees 101
Consumer cause lawyers in the United States : lawyers for the movement or a movement unto themselves? 120
Sect. II Lawyers and activists/lawyers as activists : professional identities and movement politics
To lead with law : reassessing the influence of legal advocacy organizations in social movements 145
Social movement strategies and the participatory potential of litigation 164
The haves come out ahead : how cause lawyers frame the legal systems for movements 182
In legal culture, but not of it : the role of cause lawyers in evangelical legal mobilization 197
Interesting identities : cause lawyers as legal professionals and social movement actors 220
Sect. III Beyond litigation : other roles, other styles for cause lawyers in social movements
The movement takes the lead : the role of lawyers in the struggle for a living wage in Santa Monica, California 249
A movement in the wake of a new law : the United Farm Workers and the California Agricultural Labor Relations Act 277
Mobilization lawyering : community economic development in the Figueroa Corridor 302
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