This well-researched and engrossing book illuminates the constitutional jurisprudence of President Franklin D. Roosevelt's most notable appointees to the United States Supreme Court―Hugo L. Black, Felix Frankfurter, and Robert H. Jackson. 'New Deal Justice' draws extensively upon the memoirs, writings, opinions, and personal papers of these justices but also employs the insights of recent works on American legal, social, and political theory to dramatically alter the theoretical lens through which previous scholars have analyzed their decision making. Hockett pays particular attention to Black's controversial constitutional absolutism, Frankfurter's extraordinary deference to the decisions of legislative and administrative bodies, and Jackson's pragmatic use of the power of judicial review. The author persuasively argues that the New Deal Court was characterized by regional, cultural, and ideological tensions that manifested in the social and political theories of these three justices. This is important reading for students and scholars of constitutional judicial theory and the history of the U.S. Supreme Court.
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Jeffrey D. Hockett is assistant professor of political science at the University of Tulsa, Oklahoma.Review:
. . . can serve as an important starting point for students and scholars of judicial theory and the history of the U.S. Supreme Court. (Judicature)
. . . a significant contribution to the literatures on the jurisprudence, history, and politics of the New Deal era. (David M. O'Brien, University of Virginia; author of Constitutional Law and Politics)
A splendid addition to the literature on the New Deal Justices and, as importantly, to the interplay of politics, law, and culture in the judicial decision-making process of the modern Supreme Court. (Kermit L. Hall, Ohio State University)
Hockett presents a rich historical account of Populist and Progressive thought, appealing biographical portraits of the three justices, and a good overview of Post-New Deal landmark cases. (Perspectives on Political Science)
The book is well written and has good insights. (Richard D. Friedman, University of Michigan Law School H-Net: Humanities and Social Science Reviews Online)
Hockett has added a significant piece to the puzzle of the mid-twentieth-century court. (William Lasser American Political Science Review)
New Deal Justice is tightly written and forcefully argued. It provides an excellent introduction for people interested in understanding Supreme Court decision making during the immediate postwar period. Hockett does a wonderful job of demonstrating how the tenets of both Populism and Progressivism made their way into the constitutional thought associated with the New Deal. (Law and History Review)
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