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New York University Press

From Lynch Mobs to the Killing State: Race and the Death Penalty in America

From Lynch Mobs to the Killing State: Race and the Death Penalty in America

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Situates the linkage between race and the death penalty in the history of the U.S.

Since 1976, over forty percent of prisoners executed in American jails have been African American or Hispanic. This trend shows little evidence of diminishing, and follows a larger pattern of the violent criminalization of African American populations that has marked the country's history of punishment.

In a bold attempt to tackle the looming question of how and why the connection between race and the death penalty has been so strong throughout American history, Ogletree and Sarat headline an interdisciplinary cast of experts in reflecting on this disturbing issue. Insightful original essays approach the topic from legal, historical, cultural, and social science perspectives to show the ways that the death penalty is racialized, the places in the death penalty process where race makes a difference, and the ways that meanings of race in the United States are constructed in and through our practices of capital punishment.

From Lynch Mobs to the Killing State not only uncovers the ways that race influences capital punishment, but also attempts to situate the linkage between race and the death penalty in the history of this country, in particular the history of lynching. In its probing examination of how and why the connection between race and the death penalty has been so strong throughout American history, this book forces us to consider how the death penalty gives meaning to race as well as why the racialization of the death penalty is uniquely American.

Author: Austin Sarat
Publisher: New York University Press
Published: 05/01/2006
Pages: 320
Binding Type: Paperback
Weight: 0.95lbs
Size: 8.94h x 6.04w x 0.78d
ISBN: 9780814740224

About the Author
Austin Sarat (Author)
Austin Sarat is William Nelson Cromwell Professor of Jurisprudence and Political Science at Amherst College. He has collaborated with Charles J. Ogletree on numerous works for NYU Press, including Racial Reconciliation and the Healing of a Nation: Beyond Law and Rights, Punishment in Popular Culture, When Law Fails: Making Sense of Miscarriages of Justice, The Road to Abolition? The Future of Capital Punishment in the United States, and From Lynch Mobs to the Killing State: Race and the Death Penalty in America. He is also the co-editor of Guns in Law, Criminals and Enemies, Law's Mistakes, Reimagining "To Kill a Mockingbird" Family, . Community, and the Possibility of Equal Justice under Law, and many others.

Charles J. Ogletree, Jr. (Editor)
Charles J. Ogletree, Jr. is the Jesse Climenko Professor of Law and Executive Director of the Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race and Justice at Harvard Law School. He is the author of All Deliberate Speed: Reflections on the First Half-Century of Brown v. Board of Education (WW Norton and Company, 2004) and Co-Author of From Lynch Mobs to the Killing State: Race and the Death Penalty in America.


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