Cover: Law and Literature: Third Edition, from Harvard University PressCover: Law and Literature in PAPERBACK

Law and Literature

Third Edition

Product Details


$33.50 • £29.95 • €30.95

ISBN 9780674032460

Publication Date: 04/30/2009

Academic Trade

592 pages

6-1/8 x 9-1/4 inches

1 table


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[Posner] has written and rewritten the most comprehensive study of the connections between law and literature.—James Seaton, The Weekly Standard

This complex, superbly argued book remains a remarkable achievement and is made even more useful in this new edition. Richard Posner knows how much legal thinking can profit from the study of literary traditions and classic works of fiction. He also is acutely aware of the limits on the application of literary practice to the law. The bracing manner in which he debunks the sentimental notion that literature and—worse—literary theory are law’s salvation is a pleasure to read.—Denis Dutton, Editor, Philosophy and Literature

With his usual astonishing range of interests, Richard Posner treats facets of ‘law and literature’ ranging from popular culture to copyright to whether reading great literature necessarily contributes to one’s moral growth (and more besides). Every reader will be provoked, challenged, and illuminated by Posner’s insights and arguments.—Sanford V. Levinson, author of Our Undemocratic Constitution: Where the Constitution Goes Wrong (And How We the People Can Correct It)

Praise for the second edition:

An outstanding work, as stimulating as it is intellectually distinguished… Not only are [Posner’s] arguments readily grasped, and driven home with an exhilarating forensic skill; in pursuing them, he is also compelled to define his own positions more sharply.—John Gross, The New York Times

A wonderfully original and instructive study of what literature has to teach about the law, the methods of legal argument, and the interpretation of statutes and the Constitution… Posner’s adversaries are hopelessly outmatched in these arguments, but they are only supporting characters in a larger and more interesting drama—Mr. Posner’s own exegesis of the relation of literature to law propounded in a series of arresting, brilliantly interwoven interpretations of dozens of literary works.—Christopher DeMuth, The Wall Street Journal

A book filled with keen judgment, shrewd common sense, and great erudition worn gracefully. Posner’s command of his materials—literature, law, and the bodies of commentary and scholarship attached to each—is truly impressive. Still more so is his ability to make the issues vividly clear to the average reader.—Merle Rubin, The Christian Science Monitor

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