Making Rights Real: Activists, Bureaucrats, and the Creation of the Legalistic State

Making Rights Real: Activists, Bureaucrats, and the Creation of the Legalistic State

by Charles R. Epp
     
 

It’s a common complaint: the United States is overrun by rules and procedures that shackle professional judgment, have no valid purpose, and serve only to appease courts and lawyers. Charles R. Epp argues, however, that few Americans would want to return to an era without these legalistic policies, which in the 1970s helped bring recalcitrant

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Overview

It’s a common complaint: the United States is overrun by rules and procedures that shackle professional judgment, have no valid purpose, and serve only to appease courts and lawyers. Charles R. Epp argues, however, that few Americans would want to return to an era without these legalistic policies, which in the 1970s helped bring recalcitrant bureaucracies into line with a growing national commitment to civil rights and individual dignity. 

Focusing on three disparate policy areas—workplace sexual harassment, playground safety, and police brutality in both the United States and the United Kingdom—Epp explains how activists and professionals used legal liability, lawsuit-generated publicity, and innovative managerial ideas to pursue the implementation of new rights. Together, these strategies resulted in frameworks designed to make institutions accountable through intricate rules, employee training, and managerial oversight. Explaining how these practices became ubiquitous across bureaucratic organizations, Epp casts today’s legalistic state in an entirely new light.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780226211657
Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
Publication date:
01/15/2010
Series:
Chicago Series in Law and Society Series
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
368
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.90(d)

Table of Contents

List of Figures

List of Tables

List of Narratives

Acknowledgments

Chapter 1. “I Felt Violated”
Chapter 2. Looking Beyond the License Plate
Chapter 3. The Decision to Stop a Driver
Chapter 4. Experiences during the Stop
Chapter 5. How Investigatory Intrusions Are Deliberately Planned (and Racially Based)
Chapter 6. Evaluating the Stop: Looking Beyond Official Politeness
Chapter 7. The Broader Lessons (and Harms) of Police Stops
Chapter 8. Toward Racial Justice in Police Stops
 
Appendix. Methodology
Notes
BibliographyIndex

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