Catharine A. MacKinnon Only Words

ISBN 13: 9780674639348

Only Words

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9780674639348: Only Words
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When is rape not a crime? When it's pornography--or so First Amendment law seems to say: in film, a rape becomes "free speech." Pornography, Catharine MacKinnon contends, is neither speech nor free. Pornography, racial and sexual harassment, and hate speech are acts of intimidation, subordination, terrorism, and discrimination, and should be legally treated as such. Only Words is a powerful indictment of a legal system at odds with itself, its First Amendment promoting the very inequalities its Fourteenth Amendment is supposed to end. In the bold and compelling style that has made her one of our most provocative legal critics, MacKinnon depicts a society caught in a vicious hypocrisy. Words that offer bribes or fix prices or segregate facilities are treated by law as acts, but words and pictures that victimize and target on the basis of race and sex are not. Pornography--an act of sexual domination reproduced in the viewing--is protected by law in the name of "the free and open exchange of ideas." But the proper concern of law, MacKinnon says, is not what speech says, but what it does. What the "speech" of pornography and of racial and sexual harassment and hate propaganda does is promote and enact the power of one social group over another. Cutting with surgical deftness through cases of harassment in the workplace and on college campuses, through First Amendment cases involving Nazis, Klansmen, and pornographers, MacKinnon shows that as long as discriminatory practices are protected as free speech, equality will be only a word.

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About the Author:

Catharine A. MacKinnon is Elizabeth A. Long Professor of Law at the University of Michigan Law School.

Review:

In her most cogent and accessible book to date...MacKinnon lashes absolutists who maintain that all forms of expression including pornography and hate propaganda should be constitutionally protected. MacKinnon counters that pornography and hate messages do the same thing: enact the abuse. (Publishers Weekly)

Professor MacKinnon offers a lucid and compelling account of how lawyers and judges have used the First Amendment to transform the terrorist acts of pornographers and racist vigilantes into political speech. Only Words should be required reading for every true civil libertarian. (Charles R. Lawrence III, Georgetown University)

Only Words shows the keen power of Catharine MacKinnon's immensely challenging intellect. (Patricia J. Williams, Columbia University)

Anyone inclined to dismiss anti-pornography legislation as zealotry, or as short-sighted interference with individual rights, should read Only Words. MacKinnon states her case in prose that is as distinctive and as trenchant as Orwell's. (Richard Rorty, University of Virginia)

This little book might as well come with a fuse and matches, lighting a fire as it does under the complacent acceptance of pornography and inequality, racial and sexual, in this country. (Susan Salter Reynolds Los Angeles Times)

Only Words is a deftly crafted indictment of an absolutist free-speech doctrine that is applied hypocritically and inconsistently to protect pornography and other acts of inequality. (Amy Willard Cross Toronto Globe & Mail)

Only words, yet look at the responses, look at the rage directed toward the professor. These responses and the anger and fear that lurk within them have in a sense become part of the text of Only Words; to read them is to read a part of what MacKinnon aimed to show...MacKinnon's words have engendered real abuse, directed at her as a woman. In short, she has proved her point. (David C. Dinielli Michigan Law Review)

MacKinnon's book is an eloquent plea to Americans to move beyond what she sees as the prejudiced limitations of current doctrine, in particular of current liberal doctrine. (Bernard Williams London Review of Books)

[This book] will almost certainly reconfigure the national debate over pornography, harassment, free speech, and equality. It merits careful study by scholars in rhetoric, communication, free speech, women's studies, and law--in fact, by anyone wishing to participate in the political and legal process as an informed citizen. (Lester Olson Quarterly Journal of Speech)

In Only Words, [MacKinnon] presents the most lucid and concise presentation of her argument that porn is more than just words...Her argument is making significant legal inroads and, to understand where she would like to take us, Only Words provides a clear road map. (San Francisco Chronicle)

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Book Description HARVARD UNIVERSITY PRESS, United States, 1996. Paperback. Condition: New. Revised ed.. Language: English . This book usually ship within 10-15 business days and we will endeavor to dispatch orders quicker than this where possible. Brand New Book. When is rape not a crime? When it s pornography--or so First Amendment law seems to say: in film, a rape becomes free speech. Pornography, Catharine MacKinnon contends, is neither speech nor free. Pornography, racial and sexual harassment, and hate speech are acts of intimidation, subordination, terrorism, and discrimination, and should be legally treated as such. Only Words is a powerful indictment of a legal system at odds with itself, its First Amendment promoting the very inequalities its Fourteenth Amendment is supposed to end. In the bold and compelling style that has made her one of our most provocative legal critics, MacKinnon depicts a society caught in a vicious hypocrisy. Words that offer bribes or fix prices or segregate facilities are treated by law as acts, but words and pictures that victimize and target on the basis of race and sex are not. Pornography--an act of sexual domination reproduced in the viewing--is protected by law in the name of the free and open exchange of ideas. But the proper concern of law, MacKinnon says, is not what speech says, but what it does. What the speech of pornography and of racial and sexual harassment and hate propaganda does is promote and enact the power of one social group over another. Cutting with surgical deftness through cases of harassment in the workplace and on college campuses, through First Amendment cases involving Nazis, Klansmen, and pornographers, MacKinnon shows that as long as discriminatory practices are protected as free speech, equality will be only a word. Seller Inventory # BTE9780674639348

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