Science At The Bar / Edition 1

Science At The Bar / Edition 1

by Shelia Jasanoff
     
 

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ISBN-10: 067479303X

ISBN-13: 9780674793033

Pub. Date: 09/30/1997

Publisher: Harvard University Press

Issues spawned by the headlong pace of developments in science and technology fill the courts. How should we deal with frozen embryos and leaky implants, dangerous chemicals, DNA fingerprints, and genetically engineered animals? The realm of the law, to which beleaguered people look for answers, is sometimes at a loss--constrained by its own assumptions and

Overview

Issues spawned by the headlong pace of developments in science and technology fill the courts. How should we deal with frozen embryos and leaky implants, dangerous chemicals, DNA fingerprints, and genetically engineered animals? The realm of the law, to which beleaguered people look for answers, is sometimes at a loss--constrained by its own assumptions and practices, Sheila Jasanoff suggests. This book exposes American law's long-standing involvement in constructing, propagating, and perpetuating a variety of myths about science and technology.

Science at the Bar is the first book to examine in detail how two powerful American institutions--both seekers after truth--interact with each other. Looking at cases involving product liability, medical malpractice, toxic torts, genetic engineering, and life and death, Jasanoff argues that the courts do not simply depend on scientific findings for guidance--they actually influence the production of science and technology at many different levels. Research is conducted and interpreted to answer legal questions. Experts are selected to be credible on the witness stand. Products are redesigned to reduce the risk of lawsuits. At the same time the courts emerge here as democratizing agents in disputes over the control and deployment of new technologies, advancing and sustaining a public dialogue about the limits of expertise. Jasanoff shows how positivistic views of science and the law often prevent courts from realizing their full potential as centers for a progressive critique of science and technology.

With its lucid analysis of both scientific and legal modes of reasoning, and its recommendations for scholars and policymakers, this book will be an indispensable resource for anyone who hopes to understand the changing configurations of science, technology, and the law in our litigious society.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780674793033
Publisher:
Harvard University Press
Publication date:
09/30/1997
Series:
Twentieth Century Fund Books/Reports/Studies Series
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
304
Product dimensions:
6.14(w) x 9.21(h) x 0.64(d)

Table of Contents

Foreword by Richard C. Leone

Preface

The Intersections of Science and Law

Changing Knowledge, Changing Rules

The Law's Construction of Expertise

The Technical Discourse of Government

Law in the Republic of Science

Toxic Torts and the Politics of Causation

Legal Encounters with Genetic Engineering

Family Affairs

Definitions of Life and Death

Toward a More Reflective Alliance

Notes

Index

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