By Richard A. Posner
Hailed in its first variation as an “outstanding paintings, as stimulating because it is intellectually unique” (New York Times), legislation and Literature has handily lived as much as the Washington Post’s prediction that the publication could “remain crucial interpreting for a few years to come.” This 3rd variation, largely revised and enlarged, is the one accomplished book-length therapy of the sector. It keeps to stress the basic ameliorations among legislations and literature, that are rooted within the diverse social features of felony and literary texts. however it additionally explores parts of mutual illumination and expands its variety to incorporate new issues equivalent to the tough and weird punishments clause of the structure, unlawful immigration, surveillance, worldwide warming and bioterrorism, and plagiarism. during this version, literary works from classics by way of Homer, Shakespeare, Milton, Dostoevsky, Melville, Kafka, and Camus to modern fiction via Tom Wolfe, Margaret Atwood, John Grisham, and Joyce Carol Oates come less than Richard Posner’s scrutiny, as does the movie The Matrix. The publication continues to be the main transparent, acute account of the intersection of legislations and literature.
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The corporation is a figÂ�ure of ravenous desire, conceived as a mere agent of distribution but ending up as the great consumer of value. It is the answer toÂ€the wonderful question of capÂ�italism that [Walter Benn] Michaels poses: How do rich people who seem to have all that a person could want manage to keep on wanting? A person has to have a limited body and hence a limited appetite, but the corporation can transcend these limits. Just as the corporation, saviorlike, takes upon itself the liability of its investors, it also takes on their desires and keeps them safe from satiation.
Bad blood has arisen between “Tom’s” uncle and the two Italians, and they have the misfortune to be passing by the uncle’s house when he is murdered. They hear his screams and rush in and are still there when the neighbors arrive. The murder weapon, found after “Tom” discarded it following the murder, had been stolen from one of the twins. They are prosecuted for the murder. Wilson defends them—it is his first big case. The evening before he is to put on what we are led to expect will be a hopeless defense, “Tom” is visiting him and happens to place his thumb on a glass slide from Wilson’s fingerprint collection, leaving a print that Wilson recognizes as identical to a print that he had lifted from the murder weapon.
That the law is a detail in all this can be made clearer by a comparison with another novel by Cozzens, Guard of Honor. Set in Florida during World War II, it recounts a brief period in the administration of an air base by a young major general. He is champing at the bit to be sent overseas to do more fightÂ�ing (he had held a major command in the North African campaign). But we soon understand that his command of the base, which involves dealing with domestic crises that have no martial dimension (race relations, a training accident), is an important preparation for the major combat command that he is slated to assume next—and that, with nice irony, is the command of fighter cover for the invasion of Japan, which never took place.