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Law and Gender Commons

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University of Nevada, Las Vegas -- William S. Boyd School of Law

Death penalty

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Full-Text Articles in Law and Gender

Executing White Masculinities: Lessons From Karla Faye Tucker, Joan W. Howarth Jan 2002

Executing White Masculinities: Lessons From Karla Faye Tucker, Joan W. Howarth

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Gender is a constant struggle. Throughout our lives, we contend with multiple unstable and oppositional social constructions of gender, or hierarchies of masculinities and femininities. Knowing, or trying to know, who is male and who is female, and how men and women should act, is a major part of the structure of our identities, our societies, and our democracy. These gender questions are not separate from race or class; together for example, they shape what is expected of a poor young White man or a middle-class, African American grandmother. Racialized and class-based, gender helps to tell us who is frightening ...


Representing Black Male Innocence, Joan W. Howarth Jan 1997

Representing Black Male Innocence, Joan W. Howarth

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This Article is a case study of a California capital case. Drawing on cultural studies, the first part develops the social construction of Black male gang member, especially as that identity is understood within white imaginations. The powerful and frightening idea of a Black man who is a gang member, even gang leader, captured the imagination and moral passion of the decisionmakers in this case, recasting and reframing the evidence in furtherance of this idea. In fundamental ways, this idea or imposed identity is fundamentally inconsistent with any American concept of innocence.

The second part uses the case to investigate ...


Deciding To Kill: Revealing The Gender In The Task Handed To Capital Jurors, Joan W. Howarth Jan 1994

Deciding To Kill: Revealing The Gender In The Task Handed To Capital Jurors, Joan W. Howarth

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Day after day, across this country, ordinary people are summoned to court for a selection process that ultimately leaves them in a room deciding, with other jurors, whether a criminal defendant should be killed. The task handed to these jurors is an awesome, personal, moral decision, encased within the complex legal standards and procedures that constitute modern capital jurisprudence. The doctrine that created and sustains this moment of conscience reflects an ongoing struggle of rule against uncertainty, reason against emotion, justice against mercy, and thus, at one level, male against female. Capital jurisprudence -- the law for deciding whether to kill ...


Review Essay: Feminism, Lawyering, And Death Row, Joan W. Howarth Jan 1992

Review Essay: Feminism, Lawyering, And Death Row, Joan W. Howarth

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Representing men on death row is confounding, but not without reward. This lawyering work has taught me at least two lessons, the subjects of this essay. First, capital punishment--our attempt to use legal procedures to kill people fairly--is a feminist issue, or should be. Second, death row representation is too big a job for lawyers; we need to recruit poets. To develop these ideas, and perhaps to convince you without requiring you to undertake the same path to these conclusions, I am appropriating novelist Beverly Lowry's stunning new book, Crossed Over: A Murder, A Memoir. Crossed Over is the ...