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Most Deserving of Death? : An Analysis of the Supreme Court's Death Penalty Jurisprudence
Ashgate Publishing, March 2012, Pages: 226
The role of capital punishment in America has been criticised by those for and against the death penalty, by the judiciary, academics, the media and by prison personnel. This book demonstrates that it is the inconsistent and often incoherent jurisprudence of the United States Supreme Court which accounts for a system so lacking in public confidence.
Using case studies, Kenneth Williams examines issues such as jury selection, ineffective assistance of counsel, the role of race and claims of innocence which affect the Court's decisions and how these decisions are played out in the lower courts, often an inmate's last recourse before execution. Discussing international treaties and their lack of impact on capital punishment in America, this book has international appeal and makes an important contribution to legal scholarship. It also provides a unique understanding of the dynamics of an alarmingly problematic system and will be valuable to those interested in human rights and criminal justice.
- History of capital punishment in the United States
- The problem of ineffective representation
- Race and the death penalty
- Mental illness
- Death penalty procedures and appeals
- International law and the death penalty
- Methods of execution
- Judges and capital punishment
Kenneth Williams is Professor of Law at South Texas College of Law, USA and is a national authority on capital punishment. He has taught and published extensively on the subject, and currently represents several death row inmates in the state of Texas.
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