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Encyclopedia of American Civil Liberties

Overview

This Encyclopedia on American history and law is the first devoted to examining the issues of civil liberties and their relevance to major current events while providing a historical context and a philosophical discussion of the evolution of civil liberties.

Coverage includes the traditional civil liberties: freedom of speech, press, religion, assembly, and petition. In addition, it also covers concerns such as privacy, the rights of the accused, and national security. ...

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Encyclopedia of American Civil Liberties

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Overview

This Encyclopedia on American history and law is the first devoted to examining the issues of civil liberties and their relevance to major current events while providing a historical context and a philosophical discussion of the evolution of civil liberties.

Coverage includes the traditional civil liberties: freedom of speech, press, religion, assembly, and petition. In addition, it also covers concerns such as privacy, the rights of the accused, and national security. Alphabetically organized for ease of access, the articles range in length from 250 words for a brief biography to 5,000 words for in-depth analyses. Entries are organized around the following themes:

  • organizations and government bodies
  • legislation and legislative action, statutes, and acts
  • historical overviews
  • biographies
  • cases
  • themes, issues, concepts, and events.

The Encyclopedia of American Civil Liberties is an essential reference for students and researchers as well as for the general reader to help better understand the world we live in today.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
This encyclopedia has no entry for "civil liberties," but its scope defines the phrase broadly as the customary issues of speech, press, and religion, plus civil rights and criminal procedure. The coverage is clearly driven by law professors (Finkelman teaches at the Albany Law School): most articles are U.S. Supreme Court cases. Supreme Court justices are heavily represented, though inconsistently: James McReynolds and Tom Clark get articles, yet Hugo Black, William Brennan, and Harry Blackmun do not; there was room for Erwin Chemerinsky, Paul Freund, Laurence Tribe, and Yale Kamisar—all law professors—as well as feminist Andrea Dworkin, singer Anita Bryant, postmaster general Amos Kendall, and Oliver Cromwell. The articles are wildly uneven. Lyndon Johnson gets three paragraphs, which cover only his wiretapping—his civil rights efforts aren't mentioned—while Martin Luther King's entry has room for the street address where he was born. References are usually to law reviews and law school casebooks, and some don't specifically relate to the subject of the articles that cite them. Contributors often omit fundamental books, e.g, Robert Caro's life of LBJ; list questionable material, e.g., Anthony Summers's bio of J. Edgar Hoover; or cite ancient sources without proper explanation, e.g., the "grand jury" entry refers to two books, from 1777 and 1906.
—Michael O. Eshleman
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780415943420
  • Publisher: Taylor & Francis
  • Publication date: 9/1/2006
  • Pages: 2304
  • Product dimensions: 9.40 (w) x 11.80 (h) x 6.70 (d)

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