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Coercion to Compromise – Plea Bargaining, the Courts, and the Making of Political Authority - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Coercion to Compromise: Plea Bargaining, the Courts, and the Making of Political Authority

Mary E. Vogel


This book examines the origins of the controversial practice of plea bargaining, a procedure that appears to reward the guilty. Contrary to popular perception of plea bargaining as an innovation or corruption of the post-World War II years, it shows the practice to have emerged early in the American Republic. The book argues that plea bargaining arose in the 1830s as part of a process of political stabilization, and as an effort to legitimate the democratic institutions of self-rule that were crucial to Whig efforts to reconsolidate the political power of Boston's social and economic elite. At ... More

Keywords: plea bargaining, guilty, 1830s, political stabilization, self-rule, Whigs, Boston, courts, legal tradition

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2007 Print ISBN-13: 9780195101751
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2012 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195101751.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Mary E. Vogel, author
University of California, Santa Barbara