9780226211657

Making Rights Real: Activists, Bureaucrats, and the Creation of the Legalistic State

by
  • ISBN13:

    9780226211657

  • ISBN10:

    0226211657

  • Edition: 1st
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2010-02-01
  • Publisher: Univ of Chicago Pr

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Summary

It's a common complaint: the United States is overrun by rules and procedures that shackle professional judgment, have no valid purpose, and serve only to appease courts and lawyers. Charles R. Epp argues, however, that few Americans would want to return to an era without these legalistic policies, which in the 1970s helped bring recalcitrant bureaucracies into line with a growing national commitment to civil rights and individual dignity. Focusing on three disparate policy areas workplace sexual harassment, playground safety, and police brutality in both the United States and the United Kingdom Epp explains how activists and professionals used legal liability, lawsuit-generated publicity, and innovative managerial ideas to pursue the implementation of new rights. Together, these strategies resulted in frameworks designed to make institutions accountable through intricate rules, employee training, and managerial oversight. Explaining how these practices became ubiquitous across bureaucratic organizations, Epp casts today's legalistic state in an entirely new light.

Author Biography

Charles R. Epp is associate professor in the Department of Public Administration at the University of Kansas.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgmentsp. vii
Introductionp. 1
Theory: The Fertile Fear of Liabilityp. 13
The Problem with Policingp. 31
Liability's Triumphp. 59
Policing's Epiphanyp. 93
Spreading the Word: Variations among Police Departmentp. 115
Tort Liability and Police Reform in Britainp. 139
Sexual Harassmentp. 165
Playground Safetyp. 197
Conclusionp. 215
Methodological Appendixp. 233
Notesp. 265
Bibliographyp. 321
Indexp. 34
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