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The Law Unbound!: A Richard Delgado Reader

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This book offers the best and most influential writings of Richard Delgado, one of the founding figures of the critical race theory movement and one of the earliest scholars to address the harms of hate speech. With excerpts from his classic law review articles, conversations with his famous alter ego Rodrigo Crenshaw, and comments on the vicissitudes of academic life, this book spans topics such as hate speech, affirmative action, the war on terror, the endangered status of black men, and the place of Latinos in the civil rights equation.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Richard Delgado is a towering figure in contemporary legal studies. His subtle intelligence, deep love of justice, and democratic vision are contagious. There is no one like him on the scene!"

“Richard Delgado and his alter-ego Rodrigo are a breath of fresh air in the legal academy and social sciences - or perhaps a tornado, if tornados can be salutary. Delgado's essays mix passion, commitment, a hard-edged intellect, deep knowledge, and imagination to create a corpus of work that blows away conventional wisdom and easy assumptions. His insistence that class matters as well as race, that free speech should be examined as well as celebrated, that narrative generates as much insight as logic or data all teach us to be better scholars and better citizens. This collection of essays is a boon to those of us who already value his work and it will extend his reach to those poor benighted souls who do not yet know it as well as they should.”—

“A triple delight: a path-finding lawyer, a mesmerizing story-teller, and a Quixotic hero, all in one. The Rodrigo Chronicles are lucid explorations of the shifting paradigms that define America today. They prove that Richard Delgado is more than a brainchild of the Enlightenment; he's one of its sharpest critics. His work is at the avant-garde in rethinking race and democracy. In short, he's the real thing, and the rarest.”

"Richard Delgado has done it again! In these classic essays, Delgado's restless mind touches on everything from the politics of academic scholarship to the economics of right-wing activism, from the harms of hate speech to the connection between racism and free-market economics. His writing is crisp, his imagination lively, and his thoughts always provocative and trenchant. This is an essential collection for those interested in critical race theory and critical legal scholarship more generally."—

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781594512476
  • Publisher: Paradigm Publishers
  • Publication date: 6/28/2007
  • Pages: 448
  • Product dimensions: 6.40 (w) x 9.40 (h) x 1.30 (d)

Meet the Author

Richard Delgado is University Distinguished Professor and Derrick Bell Fellow at the University of Pittsburgh. He is author, with Jean Stefancic, of No Mercy: How Conservative Think Tanks and Foundations Changed America’s Social Agenda (Temple University Press, 1996).

Adrien Katherine Wing is Bessie Dutton Murray Professor of Law at the University of Iowa College of Law.

Jean Stefanic is Research Professor of Law and Derrick Bell Scholar at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments     vii
Introduction     ix
Narrative and Legal Storytelling     1
Storytelling for Oppositionists and Others: A Plea for Narrative     3
Rodrigo's Chronicle     20
Rodrigo's Third Chronicle: Care, Competition, and the Redemptive Tragedy of Race     34
Rodrigo's Final Chronicle: Cultural Power, the Law Reviews, and the Attack on Narrative Jurisprudence     52
Rodrigo's Eleventh Chronicle: Empathy and False Empathy     69
Critical Theory     91
The Racial Double Helix: Watson, Crick, and Brown v. Board of Education     93
Rodrigo's Fourth Chronicle: Neutrality and Stasis in Antidiscrimination Law     101
Rodrigo's Eighth Chronicle: Black Crime, White Fears-On the Social Construction of Threat     117
Rodrigo's Ninth Chronicle: Race, Legal Instrumentalism, and the Rule of Law     137
Linking Arms: Interracial Coalition as an Avenue of Social Reform     154
Law, Legal Education, and the Legal Profession     165
The Imperial Scholar: Reflections on a Review of Civil Rights Literature     167
Rodrigo's Thirteenth Chronicle: Legal Formalism and Law's Discontents     175
Official Elitism or Institutional Self-Interest? Ten Reasons Why Law Schools Should Abandon the LSAT     197
HateSpeech     209
Words That Wound: A Tort Action for Racial Insults Epithets, and Name-Calling     211
The "More Speech" Solution: Can Free Expression Remedy Systemic Social Ills?     217
Campus Antiracism Rules: Constitutional Narratives in Collision     225
Toward a Legal Realist View of the First Amendment     234
Law Reform     241
The Social Construction of Brown v. Board of Education: Law Reform and the Reconstructive Paradox     243
Joseph Sax, the Public Trust Theory of Environmental Protection and Some Dark Thoughts on the Possibility of Law Reform     253
On Taking Back Our Civil Rights Promises: When Equality Doesn't Compute     258
Rodrigo's Sixth Chronicle: Intersections, Essences, and the Dilemma of Social Reform     262
Latinos and Other Nonblack Minorities     283
Rodrigo's Fifteenth Chronicle: Racial Mixture, Latino-Critical Scholarship, and the Black-White Binary     285
Derrick Bell's Toolkit: Fit to Dismantle That Famous House?     296
Politics and Critique     307
Shadowboxing: An Essay on Power     309
Rodrigo's Seventh Chronicle: Race, Democracy, and the State     314
Rodrigo's Remonstrance: Love and Despair in an Age of Indifference     327
Rodrigo's Roadmap: Is the Marketplace Theory for Eradicating Discrimination a Blind Alley?     338
Zero-Based Racial Politics: An Evaluation of Three Best-Case Arguments on Behalf of the Nonwhite Underclass     356
Affirmative Action     363
1998 Hugo L. Black Lecture: Ten Arguments against Affirmative Action-How Valid?     365
Rodrigo's Tenth Chronicle: Merit and Affirmative Action     375
Annotated Bibliography     397
Index     419
About the Author and Editors     431
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