Israel currently has two recognized systems of law operating side by side: civil and religious. Israeli religious courts possess the exclusive right to conduct and terminate marriages. There is no civil marriage or divorce in Israel, irrespective of one’s religious inclinations. All Muslims must marry and divorce in accordance with shariya laws, all Catholics in accordance with canon law, and all Jews in accordance with Torah law (halakha). The interpretation and implementation of Torah law is in the hands of the Orthodox religious establishment, the only stream of Judaism that enjoys legal recognition in Israel. The rabbinic courts strenuously oppose any changes to this so-called status quo arrangement between religious and secular authorities. In fact, religious courts in Israel are currently pressing for expanded jurisdiction beyond personal status, stressing their importance to Israel’s growing religious community. This book shows how religious courts, based on centuries-old patriarchal law, undermine the full civil and human rights of Jewish women in Israel. Making a broad argument for civil marriage and divorce in Israel, the authors also emphasize that religious marriages and divorces, when they do occur, must benefit from legislation that makes divorce easier to obtain. Making this issue their focal point, they speak to a larger question: Is Israel a democracy or a theocracy?
The experience of Mexican Americans in the United States has been marked by oppression at the hands of the legal system—but it has also benefited from successful appeals to the same system. Mexican Americans and the Law illustrates how Mexican Americans have played crucial roles in mounting legal challenges regarding issues that directly affect their political, educational, and socioeconomic status.
Each chapter highlights historical contexts, relevant laws, and policy concerns for a specific issue and features abridged versions of significant state and federal cases involving Mexican Americans. Beginning with People v. Zammora (1940), the trial that was a precursor to the Zoot Suit Riots in Los Angeles during World War II, the authors lead students through some of the most important and precedent-setting cases in American law:
- Educational equality: from segregation concerns in Méndez v. Westminster (1946) to unequal funding in San Antonio Independent School District vs. Rodríguez (1973)
- Gender issues: reproductive rights in Madrigal v. Quilligan (1981), workplace discrimination in EEOC v. Hacienda Hotel (1989), sexual violence in Aguirre-Cervantes v. INS (2001)
- Language rights: Ýñiguez v. Arizonans for Official English (1995), García v. Gloor (1980), Serna v. Portales Municipal Schools (1974)
- Immigration-: search and seizure questions in U.S. v. Brignoni-Ponce (1975) and U.S. v. Martínez-Fuerte (1976); public benefits issues in Plyler v. Doe (1982) and League of United Latin American Citizens v. Wilson (1997)
- Voting rights: redistricting in White v. Regester (1973) and Bush v. Vera (1996)
- Affirmative action: Hopwood v. State of Texas (1996) and Coalition for Economic Equity v. Wilson (1997)
- Criminal justice issues: equal protection in Hernández v. Texas (1954); jury service in Hernández v. New York (1991); self incrimination in Miranda v. Arizona (1966); access to legal counsel in Escobedo v. Illinois (1964)
With coverage as timely as the 2003 Supreme Court decision on affirmative action, Mexican Americans and the Law offers invaluable insight into legal issues that have impacted Mexican Americans, other Latinos, other racial minorities, and all Americans. Discussion questions, suggested readings, and Internet sources help students better comprehend the intricacies of law.
A rich and detailed account of indigenous history in central and southern Mexico from the sixteenth to the twenty-first centuries, Mexico's Indigenous Communities is an expansive work that destroys the notion that Indians were victims of forces beyond their control and today have little connection with their ancient past. Indian communities continue to remember and tell their own local histories, recovering and rewriting versions of their past in light of their lived present.
Ethelia Ruiz Medrano focuses on a series of individual cases, falling within successive historical epochs, that illustrate how the practice of drawing up and preserving historical documents-in particular, maps, oral accounts, and painted manuscripts-has been a determining factor in the history of Mexico's Indian communities for a variety of purposes, including the significant issue of land and its rightful ownership. Since the sixteenth century, numerous Indian pueblos have presented colonial and national courts with historical evidence that defends their landholdings.
Because of its sweeping scope, groundbreaking research, and the author's intimate knowledge of specific communities, Mexico's Indigenous Communities is a unique and exceptional contribution to Mexican history. It will appeal to students and specialists of history, indigenous studies, ethnohistory, and anthropology of Latin America and Mexico
Most people in the United States today no longer live their lives under the guidance of local institutionalized religious leadership, such as rabbis, ministers, and priests; rather, liberals and conservatives alike have taken charge of their own religious or spiritual practices. This shift, along with other social and cultural changes, has opened up a perhaps surprising space for chaplains—spiritual professionals who usually work with the endorsement of a religious community but do that work away from its immediate hierarchy, ministering in a secular institution, such as a prison, the military, or an airport, to an ever-changing group of clients of widely varying faiths and beliefs.
In A Ministry of Presence, Winnifred Fallers Sullivan explores how chaplaincy works in the United States—and in particular how it sits uneasily at the intersection of law and religion, spiritual care, and government regulation. Responsible for ministering to the wandering souls of the globalized economy, the chaplain works with a clientele often unmarked by a specific religious identity, and does so on behalf of a secular institution, like a hospital. Sullivan's examination of the sometimes heroic but often deeply ambiguous work yields fascinating insights into contemporary spiritual life, the politics of religious freedom, and the never-ending negotiation of religion's place in American institutional life.
In the wake of the black civil rights movement, other disadvantaged groups of Americans began to make headway--Latinos, women, Asian Americans, and the disabled found themselves the beneficiaries of new laws and policies--and by the early 1970s a minority rights revolution was well underway. In the first book to take a broad perspective on this wide-ranging and far-reaching phenomenon, John D. Skrentny exposes the connections between the diverse actions and circumstances that contributed to this revolution--and that forever changed the face of American politics.
Though protest and lobbying played a role in bringing about new laws and regulations--touching everything from wheelchair access to women's athletics to bilingual education--what Skrentny describes was not primarily a bottom-up story of radical confrontation. Rather, elites often led the way, and some of the most prominent advocates for expanding civil rights were the conservative Republicans who later emerged as these policies' most vociferous opponents. This book traces the minority rights revolution back to its roots not only in the black civil rights movement but in the aftermath of World War II, in which a world consensus on equal rights emerged from the Allies' triumph over the oppressive regimes of Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan, and then the Soviet Union. It also contrasts failed minority rights development for white ethnics and gays/lesbians with groups the government successfully categorized with African Americans. Investigating these links, Skrentny is able to present the world as America's leaders saw it; and so, to show how and why familiar figures--such as Lyndon Johnson, Richard Nixon, and, remarkably enough, conservatives like Senator Barry Goldwater and Robert Bork--created and advanced policies that have made the country more egalitarian but left it perhaps as divided as ever.
In More Than Victims, Donald Downs offers a sympathetic and powerful analysis of the problems attending the use of battered-woman syndrome as a legal defense, ultimately revealing how the syndrome's logic actually harms those it is trying to protect. A persuasive account of how constitutional freedom and individual justice can be threatened by current legal standards, this thorough yet accessible work presents a dramatic rethinking of the criminal justice system.
"More Than Victims is a powerful step in the right direction. Women as well as men need to be protected from violence, and women, in particular, require better understanding of their sometimes oppressive situations. But they also need to be able to participate fully in the discourse of politics and citizenship. Downs offers a solution that helps to make both possible."—Teresa Godwin Phelps, Review of Politics
"Downs has written an important book on a subject that deserves more of our attention."— Susan Mezey, Law and Politics Book Review
"Comprehensive and compelling. [Downs] demonstrates a masterful grasp of the complex legal and philosophical issues implicated in domestic violence cases."—Annette DeMichele, New York Law Journal
The last two decades have witnessed two political transformations that have deeply affected the lives of the indigenous peoples of Latin America. First, a discourse on indigeneity has emerged that links local struggles across the continent with transnational movements whose core issues are racism and political and cultural rights. Second, recent constitutional reforms in several countries recognize the multicultural character of Latin American countries and the legal pluralism that necessarily follows.
Multiple InJustices synthesizes R. Aída Hernández Castillo’s twenty-four years of activism and research among indigenous women’s organizations in Latin America. As both feminist and critical anthropologist, Hernández Castillo analyzes the context of legal pluralism wherein the indigenous women of Mexico, Guatemala, and Colombia struggle for justice. Through ethnographical research in community, state, and international justice, she reflects on the possibilities and limitations of customary, national, and international law for indigenous women.
Colonialism, racism, and patriarchal violence have been fundamental elements for the reproduction of capitalism, Hernández Castillo asserts. Only a social policy that offers economic alternatives based on distribution of wealth and a real recognition of cultural and political rights of indigenous peoples can counter the damage of outside forces such as drug cartels on indigenous lands.
She concludes that the theories of indigenous women on culture, tradition, and gender equity—as expressed in political documents, event reports, public discourse, and their intellectual writings—are key factors in the decolonization of Latin American feminisms and social justice for all.
In 1894 Wisconsin game wardens Horace Martin and Josiah Hicks were dispatched to arrest Joe White, an Ojibwe ogimaa (chief), for hunting deer out of season and off-reservation. Martin and Hicks found White and made an effort to arrest him. When White showed reluctance to go with the wardens, they started beating him; he attempted to flee, and the wardens shot him in the back, fatally wounding him. Both Martin and Hicks were charged with manslaughter in local county court, and they were tried by an all-white jury. A gripping historical study, The Murder of Joe White contextualizes this event within decades of struggle of White’s community at Rice Lake to resist removal to the Lac Courte Oreilles Reservation, created in 1854 at the Treaty of La Pointe. While many studies portray American colonialism as defined by federal policy, The Murder of Joe White seeks a much broader understanding of colonialism, including the complex role of state and local governments as well as corporations. All of these facets of American colonialism shaped the events that led to the death of Joe White and the struggle of the Ojibwe to resist removal to the reservation.