BN.com Gift Guide

Our Lives Before the Law: Constructing a Feminist Jurisprudence

Paperback (Print)
Used and New from Other Sellers
Used and New from Other Sellers
from $1.99
Usually ships in 1-2 business days
(Save 95%)
Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (14) from $1.99   
  • New (5) from $22.98   
  • Used (9) from $1.99   

Overview

According to Judith Baer, feminist legal scholarship today does not effectively address the harsh realities of women's lives. Feminists have marginalized themselves, she argues, by withdrawing from mainstream intellectual discourse. In Our Lives Before the Law, Baer thus presents the framework for a new feminist jurisprudence—one that would return feminism to relevance by connecting it in fresh and creative ways with liberalism.

Baer starts from the traditional feminist premise that the legal system has a male bias and must do more to help women combat violence and overcome political, economic, and social disadvantages. She argues, however, that feminist scholarship has over-corrected for this bias. By emphasizing the ways in which the system fails women, feminists have lost sight of how it can be used to promote women's interests and have made it easy for conventional scholars to ignore legitimate feminist concerns. In particular, feminists have wrongly linked the genuine flaws of conventional legal theory to its basis in liberalism, arguing that liberalism focuses too heavily on individual freedom and not enough on individual responsibility. In fact, Baer contends, liberalism rests on a presumption of personal responsibility and can be used as a powerful intellectual foundation for holding men and male institutions more accountable for their actions.

The traditional feminist approach, Baer writes, has led to endless debates about such abstract matters as character differences between men and women, and has failed to deal sufficiently with concrete problems with the legal system. She thus constructs a new feminist interpretation of three central components of conventional theory—equality, rights, and responsibility—through analysis of such pressing legal issues as constitutional interpretation, reproductive choice, and fetal protection. Baer concludes by presenting the outline of what she calls "feminist post-liberalism": an approach to jurisprudence that not only values individual freedoms but also recognizes our responsibility for addressing individuals' needs, however different those may be for men and women.

Powerfully and passionately written, Our Lives Before the Law will have a major impact on the future course of feminist legal scholarship.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
Winner of the 2000 Victoria Schuck Award, American Political Science Association

"In her latest, well-written, cogently argued book, Baer unflinchingly criticizes feminist legal scholars for being too nice. . . . Taking particular care to unravel the faulty reasoning of those feminist theorists who legitimize gender differences, Baer's ultimate goal is to provide the groundwork for a vital feminist postliberalism."Choice

Choice
In her latest, well-written, cogently argued book, Baer unflinchingly criticizes feminist legal scholars for being too nice. . . . Taking particular care to unravel the faulty reasoning of those feminist theorists who legitimize gender differences, Baer's ultimate goal is to provide the groundwork for a vital feminist postliberalism.
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780691019451
  • Publisher: Princeton University Press
  • Publication date: 8/16/1999
  • Pages: 272
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.20 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Table of Contents

PREFACE ix
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS xv
PART 1: LAW THROUGH WOMEN'S LIVES I
ONE Introduction 3
TWO Is Law Male? The Foundations of Feminist Jurisprudence 16
THREE What Makes Law Male? Gendered Jurisprudence and Feminist Critique 39
FOUR How Is Law Male? Gendered Method and Feminist Response 71
PART II: WOMEN'S LIVES THROUGH LAW 95
FIVE Reconstructing Equality: Feminist Constitutional Doctrine 97
SIX Reconstructing Rights: Feminist Reproductive Freedom 124
SEVEN Reconstructing Responsibility: Feminist Fetal Protection 151
EIGHT Toward a Feminist Postliberalism 176
NOTES 203
BIBLIOGRAPHY 247
GENERAL INDEX 265
INDEX OF CASES 273

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)