Items: 101 — 110

May 31, 2011

BOOKS: Clarence Darrow: Attorney for the Damned”

A new biog­ra­phy of Clarence Darrow by John A. Farrell chron­i­cles the life of this famous American lawyer, known for his elo­quence in defend­ing unpop­u­lar clients and in secur­ing reprieves for those con­demned to death. He won life sen­tences for Nathan Leopold and Richard Loeb, whose crimes of kid­nap­ping and mur­der had gar­nered nation­al atten­tion. He often spoke pub­licly about his oppo­si­tion to cap­i­tal pun­ish­ment. Darrow had many famous clients dur­ing his career, includ­ing union…

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May 18, 2011

BOOKS: Former Wall St. Lawyer Now Focuses on Death Row Inmates

Dale Recinella for­mer­ly worked as an attor­ney on large finan­cial deals, includ­ing the build­ing of a National Football League sta­di­um. He also sup­port­ed the death penal­ty. But he now focus­es on the needs of death row inmates and oth­er pris­on­ers in Florida. His new book, enti­tled Now I Walk on Death Row,” tells of his career tran­si­tion and the rever­sal in his views on cap­i­tal pun­ish­ment. Although he attrib­ut­es his changes to his…

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Apr 21, 2011

NEW RESOURCE: Legacy of Violence”

Legacy of Violence: Lynch Mobs and Executions in Minnesota,” a book by John D. Bessler (University of Minnesota Press, 2003), exam­ines the his­to­ry of ille­gal and state-sanc­tioned exe­cu­tions in Minnesota, one of twelve states that cur­rent­ly does not have the death penal­ty. The book is time­ly in that the cur­rent gov­er­nor, Tim Pawlenty, has pro­posed rein­stat­ing the death penal­ty, which was abol­ished in 1911. The book includes detailed per­son­al accounts from those who were involved in the…

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Apr 12, 2011

BOOKS: Queer (In)Justice: The Criminalization of LGBT People in the United States”

A new book, Queer (In)Justice” by Joey Mogul, Andrea Ritchie, and Kay Whitlock, explores the expe­ri­ences of les­bian, gay, bisex­u­al, and trans­gen­der peo­ple in America’s crim­i­nal jus­tice sys­tem, and par­tic­u­lar­ly their inter­ac­tion with the death penal­ty sys­tem. The authors assert that pros­e­cu­tors have used defen­dants’ sex­u­al ori­en­ta­tion or gen­der-non­con­form­ing appear­ance to obtain cap­i­tal con­vic­tions: In cap­i­tal cas­es a pros­e­cu­tor must suc­cess­ful­ly under­take what should be a…

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Mar 24, 2011

BOOKS: The Death Penalty from an International Perspective

A recent book by Sanaz Alasti, Cruel and Unusual Punishment: Comparative Perspective in International Conventions, the United States and Iran,” explores the ques­tion of what con­sti­tutes cru­el and unusu­al pun­ish­ment on an inter­na­tion­al lev­el. The book reviews cur­rent prac­tices in both Iran and the United States, focus­ing on the death penal­ty and the harsh­ness of such prac­tices as cor­po­ral pun­ish­ment, long terms of impris­on­ment, and inflex­i­bile laws mandating…

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Oct 27, 2010

BOOKS: The Confession” by John Grisham

A new nov­el by acclaimed author John Grisham, enti­tled The Confession,” tells the sto­ry of Donte Drumm, an inno­cent man who was con­vict­ed of mur­der and sen­tenced to death in Texas. The book begins as the exe­cu­tion of Drumm is only four days away and anoth­er man con­fess­es to the crime to a min­is­ter. Although a work of fic­tion, Grisham’s work offers a cri­tique of our crim­i­nal jus­tice sys­tem and of the death penal­ty in par­tic­u­lar. USA

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Oct 11, 2010

BOOKS: The Search for Lofie Louise”

The Search for Lofie Louise” by Helen B. Anthony tells the true sto­ry of Louise Peete, a woman con­vict­ed of two mur­ders in California over two decades apart in the ear­ly 1900s. She denied her guilt in both instances, and her sto­ry and tri­al were wide­ly cov­ered by the media in California. Peete received a life sen­tence for the first mur­der and a death sen­tence for the sec­ond; she was exe­cut­ed on April 11, 1947. The author cap­tures the his­to­ry of the death penal­ty in an ear­li­er era. Today, the…

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Oct 02, 2010

BOOKS: Evaluation for Capital Sentencing”

A new book by Dr. Mark D. Cunningham, Evaluation for Capital Sentencing,” pro­vides con­cep­tu­al and prac­ti­cal per­spec­tives on mit­i­ga­tion and vio­lence risk assess­ment, as well as cur­rent sci­en­tif­ic data regard­ing these issues. The book focus­es on infor­ma­tion crit­i­cal to foren­sic men­tal health pro­fes­sion­als who con­duct eval­u­a­tions in cap­i­tal cas­es. Prof. Andrea Lyon, Director of the Center for Justice in Capital Cases in Chicago, said, This book is an…

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Sep 20, 2010

BOOKS: Peculiar Institution: America’s Death Penalty in an Age of Abolition”

A new book by David Garland, Peculiar Institution: America’s Death Penalty in an Age of Abolition,” offers a fresh per­spec­tive on why the death penal­ty endures in the United States when so many oth­er coun­tries in the Western world have already abol­ished it. The book seeks to under­stand the per­sis­tence of the death penal­ty in the U.S. as a social fact, using soci­o­log­i­cal, his­tor­i­cal and legal analy­ses to explain the unique and pecu­liar man­ner in which the…

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Aug 03, 2010

BOOKS: Ending the Death Penalty: The European Experience in Global Perspective”

A new book by Andrew Hammel offers insights into the dif­fer­ent per­spec­tives on the death penal­ty in America and Europe. Ending the Death Penalty: The European Experience in Global Perspective” exam­ines three coun­tries that do not have the death penal­ty (Germany, France and the United Kingdom), and ana­lyzes how cap­i­tal pun­ish­ment was end­ed in those coun­tries. Hammel ulti­mate­ly believes that the gov­ern­men­tal struc­ture, cul­ture, and polit­i­cal tra­di­tions in the U.S.

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