Coverart for item
The Resource Race, rape, and injustice : documenting and challenging death penalty cases in the civil rights era, Barrett J. Foerster, edited and with a foreword by Michael Meltsner

Race, rape, and injustice : documenting and challenging death penalty cases in the civil rights era, Barrett J. Foerster, edited and with a foreword by Michael Meltsner

Label
Race, rape, and injustice : documenting and challenging death penalty cases in the civil rights era
Title
Race, rape, and injustice
Title remainder
documenting and challenging death penalty cases in the civil rights era
Statement of responsibility
Barrett J. Foerster, edited and with a foreword by Michael Meltsner
Creator
Contributor
Subject
Language
eng
Summary
  • "This book tells the dramatic story of twenty-eight law students--one of whom was the author--who went south at the height of the civil rights era and helped change death penalty jurisprudence forever. The 1965 project was organized by the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, which sought to prove statistically whether capital punishment in southern rape cases had been applied discriminatorily over the previous twenty years. If the research showed that a disproportionate number of African Americans convicted of raping white women had received the death penalty regardless of nonracial variables (such as the degree of violence used), then capital punishment in the South could be abolished as a clear violation of the Fourteenth Amendment's Equal Protection Clause. Targeting eleven states, the students cautiously made their way past suspicious court clerks, lawyers, and judges to secure the necessary data from dusty courthouse records. Trying to attract as little attention as possible, they managed--amazingly--to complete their task without suffering serious harm at the hands of white supremacists. Their findings then went to University of Pennsylvania criminologist Marvin Wolfgang, who compiled and analyzed the data for use in court challenges to death penalty convictions. The result was powerful evidence that thousands of jurors had voted on racial grounds in rape cases. This book not only tells Barrett Foerster's and his teammates story but also examines how the findings were used before a U.S. Supreme Court resistant to numbers-based arguments and reluctant to admit that the justice system had executed hundreds of men because of their skin color. Most important, it illuminates the role the project played in the landmark Furman v. Georgia case, which led to a four-year cessation of capital punishment and a more limited set of death laws aimed at constraining racial discrimination. A Virginia native who studied law at UCLA, BARRETT J. FOERSTER (1942-2010) was a judge in the Superior Court in Imperial County, California. MICHAEL MELTSNER is the George J. and Kathleen Waters Matthews Distinguished Professor of Law at Northeastern University. During the 1960s, he was first assistant counsel to the NAACP Legal Defense Fund. His books include The Making of a Civil Rights Lawyer and Cruel and Unusual: The Supreme Court and Capital Punishment. "--
  • "In this memoir of a distilling moment in the history of civil rights, Barrett Foerster writes about the summer he spent in the South as a law student in 1965 as part of a research team searching for evidence of racial bias in rape cases with convictions resulting in the death penalty. Specifically, he and his fellow law students navigated tense and, at times, violent threats in order to conduct undercover research on these cases as part of a larger study on capital punishment. This study was later a key component of a landmark Supreme Court case Furman v. Georgia, which resulted in a moratorium on executions throughout the country"--
Assigning source
  • Provided by publisher
  • Provided by publisher
Biography type
contains biographical information
Cataloging source
DLC
http://library.link/vocab/creatorDate
1942-2010
http://library.link/vocab/creatorName
Foerster, Barrett J.
Index
index present
Literary form
non fiction
Nature of contents
bibliography
http://library.link/vocab/relatedWorkOrContributorDate
1937-
http://library.link/vocab/relatedWorkOrContributorName
Meltsner, Michael
http://library.link/vocab/subjectName
  • Race discrimination
  • African Americans
  • Capital punishment
  • United States
  • African Americans
  • Rape
  • Civil rights movements
  • Foerster, Barrett J
Label
Race, rape, and injustice : documenting and challenging death penalty cases in the civil rights era, Barrett J. Foerster, edited and with a foreword by Michael Meltsner
Instantiates
Publication
Bibliography note
  • Includes bibliographical references (p. [167]-193) and index
  • Includes bibliographical references and index
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
  • txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Dimensions
24 cm
Edition
First edition.
Extent
xiii, 208 pages
Isbn
9781572338623
Isbn Type
(hbk. : alk. paper)
Lccn
2012026774
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
System control number
(OCoLC)795173887
Label
Race, rape, and injustice : documenting and challenging death penalty cases in the civil rights era, Barrett J. Foerster, edited and with a foreword by Michael Meltsner
Publication
Bibliography note
  • Includes bibliographical references (p. [167]-193) and index
  • Includes bibliographical references and index
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
  • txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Dimensions
24 cm
Edition
First edition.
Extent
xiii, 208 pages
Isbn
9781572338623
Isbn Type
(hbk. : alk. paper)
Lccn
2012026774
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
System control number
(OCoLC)795173887

Library Locations

    • Biddle Law LibraryBorrow it
      3400 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 19104, US
      39.954941 -75.193362
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