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Intimate Lies and the Law

Intimate Lies and the Law

by Jill Elaine Hasday


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Intimacy and deception are often entangled. People deceive to lure someone into a relationship or to keep her there, to drain an intimate's bank account or to use her to acquire government benefits, to control an intimate or to resist domination, or to capture myriad other advantages. No subject is immune from deception in dating, sex, marriage, and family life. Intimates can lie or otherwise intentionally mislead each other about anything and everything.

Suppose you discover that an intimate has deceived you and inflicted severe-even life-altering-financial, physical, or emotional harm. After the initial shock and sadness, you might wonder whether the law will help you secure redress. But the legal system refuses to help most people deceived within an intimate relationship. Courts and legislatures have shielded this persistent and pervasive source of injury, routinely denying deceived intimates access to the remedies that are available for deceit in other contexts.

Jill Elaine Hasday's Intimate Lies and the Law is the first book that systematically examines deception in intimate relationships and uncovers the hidden body of law governing this duplicity. Hasday argues that the law has placed too much emphasis on protecting intimate deceivers and too little importance on helping the people they deceive. The law can and should do more to recognize, prevent, and redress the injuries that intimate deception can inflict.

Entering an intimate relationship should not mean losing the law's protection from deceit.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780190905941
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Publication date: 07/24/2019
Pages: 304
Product dimensions: 6.50(w) x 1.50(h) x 9.50(d)

About the Author

Jill Elaine Hasday is a Distinguished McKnight University Professor and the Centennial Professor of Law at the University of Minnesota Law School. Her work focuses on family law, antidiscrimination law, constitutional law, and legal history. She graduated from Yale Law School and Yale College and clerked for Judge Patricia M. Wald of the United States Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit.

Table of Contents

Introduction: So Much Deception, So Little Time
Part I: The Practice of Intimate Deception
1: Why Do People Deceive Their Intimates?
2: Why Does Intimate Deception Work?
3: What Injuries Can Intimate Deceivers Inflict?
Part II: The Law of Intimate Deception
4: A Legal History of Intimate Deception
5: Modern Law's Sharp Divide Between Deception Within and Outside Intimacy
6: The Legal Protection of Ordinary Deception in Courtship, Sex, and Marriage
7: Intimate Deception Outside of Romantic, Sexual, or Marital Relationships
Part III: Reforming the Law of Intimate Deception
8: Work to Be Done