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Meaning and Power in the Language of Law

Meaning and Power in the Language of Law

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Cambridge University Press, 1/18/2018
EAN 9781107112841, ISBN10: 1107112842

Hardcover, 342 pages, 23.5 x 15.7 x 2 cm
Language: English

Legal practitioners, linguists, anthropologists, philosophers and others have all explored fundamental challenges presented by language in formulating, interpreting and applying laws. Building on centuries of interaction between legal practice and jurisprudence, the modern field of 'law and language', or 'forensic linguistics', brings insights in linguistics and related fields to bear on topics including legal drafting and translation, statutory interpretation, expert evidence on language use and dynamics of courtroom interaction. This volume presents an interlocking series of research studies engaged with different legal jurisdictions and socio-political contexts as well as with the more abstract notion of 'law'. Together the chapters, written by international leaders in their fields, highlight recent directions in research and investigate in particular how law expresses yet also conceals power relations in its crafted use of words and in the gaps and silence between those words.

Editors' Introduction Janny H. C. Leung and Alan Durant
Part I. Sui generis or Socially Problematic
The Character of Legal Language
1. The unspoken language of the law Laura Nader
2. Seeing sense
the complexity of key words that tell us what law is Alan Durant
3. Hiding in plain sight
the category of ordinary language and the case law domain of transgender marriage Christopher Hutton
Part II. Imperfect Fit between Legal Categories and Social Discourse
4. Effects of translation on the invisible power wielded by language in the legal sphere
the case of Nepal Katsuo Nawa
5. The language of film and the representation of legal subjectivity in Juno Mak's Rigor Mortis Marco Wan
Part III. Written in Silence
Hidden Social Meanings in Legal Discourse
6. Let the fingers do the talking
language, gesture and power in closing argument Greg Matoesian and Kristin Enola Gilbert
7. Questions about questioning
courtroom practice in China and the USA Meizhen Liao
8. Law, language and community sentiment
behind hate speech doctrine in India Siddharth Narrain
Part IV. Conflict between Linguistic and Legal ideologies
9. When voices fail to carry
voice projection and the case of the 'dumb' jury Chris Heffer
10. Ideology and political meaning in legal translation Janny H. C. Leung
Part V. Demands of Law and Limits of Language
11. Law and the grammar of judgment Janet Ainsworth
12. Legal indeterminacy in the spoken word Lawrence M. Solan and Silvia Dahmen
Afterword
13. The said of the unsaid Peter Goodrich.