The Search for Justice in a Media Age: Reading Stephen Lawrence and Louise Woodward

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Routledge, Nov 28, 2017 - Law - 181 pages
What can we learn from the legal cases of Stephen Lawrence and Louise Woodward? How do the legal system and the media contribute to a collective understanding of class, nation, race and gender? In this book, Siobhan Holohan explores media representations of law and order in the context of notions of multi-culturalism and victim-centred politics. Two high profile cases - the murder of Stephen Lawrence and the US trial of the British au-pair, Louise Woodward - are examined. Holohan argues that the stories built up around Woodward and Lawrence - the organization of public discourse around a sacrificial figure - have contributed to exclusionary patterns of social order. The book offers a perceptive account of what makes some criminal legal cases prone to scrutiny and spectacle and provides a vivid illustration of the presence of power relations in legal decisions. In conclusion, the author draws on the model of the Macpherson report to propose a more inclusive form of social and legal judgement that takes into account social inequalities.

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List of Figures and Tables
The Family as Moral Centre of Social
Symbolic Transformations
The Scapegoat Mechanism
Ethnic Subjectivity and Identity Reformation
The Violence of Discourse
Criminal Justice and Society
Toward an Ethics of Representation

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