Gunther presents an account of the life of one of the great judges of the 20th century, whose work has left a profound mark on our legal landscape. Although he was never appointed to the Supreme Court, Learned Hand is widely considered the peer of Justices Holmes, Brandeis and Cardozo. In his more than 50 years on the bench, he left an unequaled ...
Gunther presents an account of the life of one of the great judges of the 20th century, whose work has left a profound mark on our legal landscape. Although he was never appointed to the Supreme Court, Learned Hand is widely considered the peer of Justices Holmes, Brandeis and Cardozo. In his more than 50 years on the bench, he left an unequaled legacy of lastingly influential writings.
This is a book for those who search for "good books to read" no matter what the topic as well as for those with a special interest in it.
Hand was an important figure in American jurisprudence whose visibility is less than deserved because he was never on the Supreme Court. He is also a representative of a class and style of life rapidly disappearing if not already gone.
Stanford Law Professor Gunther has captured the legal, historical and class context magnificently in a style as entertaining to a lay person as to a lawyer.
Publishers Weekly, 1994-04-18 Stanford Law School professor Gunther, a former clerk to Hand (1872-1961) with exclusive access to his mentor's papers, ably portrays the man, perhaps the most important jurist not to serve on the Supreme Court, and explains his work. Christened Billings Learned Hand (the product of family surnames), the teenaged Learned studied philosophy at Harvard, and came by his long-held belief in judicial restraint as a Harvard Law student. Becoming a federal district judge in 1909, Hand in 1917 wrote an unpopular but ultimately influential opinion supporting free speech in a case involving the Masses , a revolutionary organ. Rising to the Second Circuit Court of Appeals in 1924, Hand helped improve judicial procedures, wrote numerous worthy opinions, gained respect as a skeptical liberal and helped found the prestigious American Law Institute, an organization aimed at improving the law. Besides describing Hand's cases, Gunther tells of the judge's personal life, his political dabblings and his popularity. The book's only drawback is its length; an abridged version could still assay Hand and reach many more readers. Photos not seen by PW. History Book Club alternate. (May)
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