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Confronting the Death Penalty – How Language Influences Jurors in Capital Cases - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Confronting the Death Penalty: How Language Influences Jurors in Capital Cases

Robin Conley


This book probes how jurors make the ultimate decision about whether another human being should live or die. Drawing on ethnographic fieldwork in Texas and interviews with jurors who served on capital trials, this book explores the means through which language helps to make death penalty decisions possible. Close analyses of trial language, written legal language, and the language of jurors’ interviews reveal how specific linguistic choices mediate and restrict jurors’, attorneys’, and judges’ actions and experiences while serving and reflecting on capital trials. The book uncovers a conflict ... More

Keywords: death penalty, jury, legal language, empathy, discursive violence

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2016 Print ISBN-13: 9780199334162
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: December 2015 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199334162.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Robin Conley, author