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Description - Justice Antonin Scalia and the Conservative Revival by Richard A. Brisbin

As the leading legal voice of the American conservative movement, Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia has challenged the assumptions and legal methodology of American liberals. In this study of the development of Justice Scalia's legal principles, political scientist Richard Brisbin explores the foundation and elaboration of the justice's conservative political vision. Scalia's jurisprudence, the author contends, values order and stability over pragmatism and experiment, relying on a majoritarian view rather than on any nucleus of founding principles embedded in the American constitution. After reviewing Scalia's legal experiences before joining the Supreme Court and describing the influences on his political and legal thought, Brisbin undertakes a detailed analysis of Scalia's Supreme Court voting record and opinions. The conservative philosophy emerging from Scalia's legal decisions, Brisbin argues, assumes the legitimacy and propriety of political regimes functioning under the rule of law. It disciplines - sometimes harshly - inappropriate uses of liberty and accepts the proposition that the law can serve as an effective means to structure, interpret and control political conflicts. Brisbin concludes that the language of Scalia's legal opinions reinforces a politics of inequality. Scalia routinely excludes from his legal discussions the powerful effect of social and economic factors on equality under the law, and he ignores the failure of supposedly fair legal procedures to eliminate injustice in American society.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780801860942
ISBN-10: 0801860946
Format: Paperback
(229mm x 152mm x mm)
Pages: 488
Imprint: Johns Hopkins University Press
Publisher: Johns Hopkins University Press
Publish Date: 1-Sep-1998
Country of Publication: United States

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Author Biography - Richard A. Brisbin

Richard A. Brisbin, Jr., associate professor of political science at West Virginia University, is co-author of West Virginia Politics and Government.

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