LAW & SOCIETY REVIEW
VOLUME 56 | NUMBER 1
When altruism is remunerated: Understanding the bases of voluntary public service among lawyers
Fiona Kay, Robert Granfield
The legal profession claims a duty of public service that calls on lawyers to volunteer their time through “pro bono” work (i.e., free legal service). And increasingly law firms strongly endorse pro bono and even remunerate time that is provided to clients without charge. But what happens when pro bono is mandated by the law firm, even compensated? Is altruism undermined? Drawing on a survey of 845 lawyers, we develop an integrated theoretical model to account for how volunteering takes place in the course of legal work. The analysis reveals psychological traits, collective norms, economic exchanges, and organizational dimensions shape lawyers’ pro bono work in intriguing ways with marked distinctions emerging when pro bono is remunerated by firms. Collective norms known to foster altruistic behavior appear most relevant to pro bono that is outside the job (i.e., unpaid), while organizational supports and constraints as well as economic exchange factors appear most salient to pro bono that is compensated within firms. We argue that a theory of pro bono work requires a more refined understanding of the forces promoting helping behaviors across several dimensions: whether to help, how much to help, and with or without compensation.
Taxes, taxpayers, and settler colonialism: Toward a critical fiscal sociology of tax as white property
In settler colonial states such as Canada, tax is central to political ideas that circulate about Indigenous nations and people. The stories that are told about Indigenous peoples by ‘taxpayers’ often involve complaints about budgets, welfare, and ‘unfair’ tax arrangements. The paper theorizes how informal ‘tax imaginaries’ and ‘taxpayer’ subjectivities are forged through state policy and how ostensibly fiscal concerns are imbricated with white political entitlement that erodes Indigenous legal and political sovereignty. By tracing the construction of taxpayer concerns and tax myths as forms of fiscalized racism, the paper demonstrates the importance of tax to settler colonialism and the shape of Indigenous-settler relations. Taxpayer subjects are not just legal or material positionings in relation to tax and the state, but powerful subjects that refigure political problems as ‘fiscal’ and construct Indigenous people and nations through racialized repertoires of property and possession.
Moralizing the law: Lactating workers and the transformation of supervising managers
Elizabeth A. Hoffmann
The Lactation at Work Law amended the Fair Labor Standards Act to mandate employer accommodation of employees’ breast milk expression. Interviews with employees, human resource specialists, and supervising managers in nine industries found that some organizations’ supervising managers, who initially perceived accommodations only as a legal mandate furthering managerial goals, over time changed to understanding lactation accommodations through a children’s-health lens that created morality-driven motivations for legal compliance–a “moralization of the law.” Educational discussions with lactating employees not only provided these supervising managers with insights into lactation at work, but also sensitized them to ethical issues surrounding lactation accommodations.
Fear and legitimacy in São Paulo, Brazil: Police–citizen relations in a high violence, high fear city
Jonathan Jackson, Krisztián Pósch, Thiago R. Oliveira, Ben Bradford, Sílvia M. Mendes, Ariadne Lima Natal, André Zanetic
We examine consensual and coercive police–citizen relations in São Paulo, Brazil. According to procedural justice theory, popular legitimacy operates as part of a virtuous circle, whereby normatively appropriate police behavior encourages people to self-regulate, which then reduces the need for coercive forms of social control. But can consensual and coercive police–citizen relations be so easily disentangled in a city in which many people fear crime, where the ability to use force can often be palpable in even mundane police–citizen interactions, where some people fear police but also tolerate extreme police violence, and where the image of the military police as “just another (violent) gang” has significant cultural currency? Legitimacy has two components—assent (ascribed right to power) and consent (conferred right to govern)—and consistent with prior work from the US, UK, and Australia, we find that procedural justice is key to the legitimation of the police. Yet, the empirical link between legitimacy and legal compliance is complicated by ambivalent authority relations, rooted in part in heightened cultural expectations about police use of force to exercise power. We finish the paper with a discussion of the theoretical and policy implications of these findings.
Kadijustiz in the ecclesiastical courts: Naming, blaming, reclaiming
Ido Shahar, Karin Carmit Yefet
The article analyzes Israel’s ecclesiastical court system through the prism of Weberian theory to both empirical and theoretical ends. On the empirical level, it aims to illuminate a grossly understudied socio-legal arena—the communal Christian courts in the Middle-East. On the theoretical level, it seeks to reclaim the Weberian concept of kadijustiz, which refers to “formally irrational” legal systems. In recent decades, scholars have engaged in a process of “blaming” that discredited the conceptualization of Islamic law as kadijustiz and resulted in the concept’s erasure from socio-legal theory. After renaming it to the more neutral and non-Orientalist richterjustiz, we employ this new-old concept to analyze Israel’s ecclesiastical courts and demonstrate its theoretical and analytical merits. The article concludes with several theoretical propositions, which draw on the empirical case study and contribute to the refinement of Weberian theory.
Decision-making in an inquisitorial system: Lessons from Brazil
Ludmila Ribeiro, Alexandre M. A. Diniz, Lívia Bastos Lages
This paper seeks to understand how decision-making works at the first appearance hearings (Custody Hearings) in Brazil, an initiative that intends to make the Brazilian criminal justice system more accusatorial. We used primary data gathered in the hearings between April and December 2018 in nine Brazilian states. Binary logistic regression models were applied to identify the variables that affect the odds ratios of pretrial detention. Results indicated a high level of homology between the prosecutors’ requests and the judges’ decisions, even when controlling for the characteristics of offense and offender, which precludes any direct openness to the defense. Decision-making in the Custody Hearing reinforces the inquisitorial characteristics and the institutional features of the Brazilian Criminal Justice System, suggesting that the reforms carried out over the last years were not able to change how actors operate on a daily basis.
Disruptive Prisoners: Resistance, Reform, and the New Deal. By Clarkson, Chris and Munn, Melissa. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2021. 320 pp. $26.21 paperback
Wives Not Slaves: Patriarchy and Modernity in the Age of Revolution. By Sword, Kristen. Chicago and London: University of Chicago Press, 2021. 408 pp. $50.00 cloth
Unsound Empire: Civilization and Madness in Late-Victorian England. By Evans, Catherine. New Haven: Yale University Press. 304 pp. $65.00 hardcover
The Gun, the Ship and the Pen: Warfare, Constitutions and the Making of the Modern World. By Colley, Linda. New York: Liveright, 2021. 512 pp. $35.00 hardcover
Marcio Cunha Filho, Michael López Stewart
Queering Family Trees: Race, Reproductive Justice, and Lesbian Motherhood. By Patton-Imani, Sandra. New York: NYU Press, 2020. 336 pp. $30.00 paperback
Corporate Personhood. By Ripken, Susanna Kim. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2019. 312 pp. $34.99 paperback
The New Sex Wars: Sexual Harm in the #MeToo Era. By Cossman, Brenda. New York: New York University Press, 2021
Policing Welfare: Punitive Adversarialism in Public Assistance. By Headworth, Spencer. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2021. 272 pp. $32.50 paperback