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In The Language of Bribery Cases, Roger W. Shuy analyzes the role that language plays in bribery cases. He describes twelve court cases for which he served as an expert witness or consultant and explains the issues at stake in each of these cases, for both lawyers and linguists. The cases described include the bribery or alleged bribery of United States senators, congressmen, judges, businessmen, and brothel owners. Shuy describes the often-unused linguistic analytical tools that are available to both the prosecution and defense as they argue these cases. He illustrates how grammatical referencing, speech acts, discourse structure, framing, conveyed meaning, and intentionality can be useful, describing how these tools affected the outcomes of the particular cases discussed in this book. The cases, fascinating in their own right, offer valuable insights not only to linguists, but also to lawyers who argue bribery cases, many of whom may not be aware of the linguistic tools available to them.
Roger W. Shuy is Emeritus Professor of Linguistics at Georgetown University and the author of ten books on language and law. Over the years has consulted on some 600 civil and criminal law cases and has testified at many federal, state trials as well as at the International Criminal Tribunal and before the US Congress on impeachment hearings.