A Jurisprudence of Power concerns the brutal suppression under martial law of the Jamaica uprising of 1865, and the explosive debate and litigation these events spawned in England. The book explores the centrality of legal ideas and institutions in English politics, and of political ideas that give rise to great questions of English law.
It documents how the world's most powerful and articulate political elite struggled to define its soul, and poses penetrating questions such as can an imperial nation remain committed to laws and legality? Can it contend with the violent resistance of subjugated peoples without corrupting the integrity of its legal and political ideals?
The book addresses these questions as it reconstructs the most prolonged and important conflict over martial law and the rule of law in the history of England in the nineteenth century.
About the Author
R.W. Kostal is an Associate Professor of Law and History at the University of Western Ontario. His research focuses on the history of modern law and society in England and the United States. His first book, Law and English Railway Capitalism 1825-1875, was awarded the Ferguson Prize of the Canadian Historical Association in 1995.
Table of Contents
1. "The Country of Law": Reconstructing the Morant Bay Uprising in England
2. "The Blood that Testifies": The Jamaica Controversy in Jamaica
3. The Drawing Room Men: The Jamaica Controversy in 1866
4. The Tenets of Terror: Reinventing the Law of Martial Law
5. Marshalling Martial Law: Litigating the Jamaica Controversy
6. "The Alphabet of Our Liberty": Chief Justice Cockburn in the Old Bailey
7. "The Most-Law Loving People in the World": The denouement of the Jamaica litigation
Epilogue: Phillips v. Eyre and the Problem of Martial Law
A Jurisprudence of Power: Law, Empire, and the Jamaica Controversy
The Jamaica Controversy as Historiography