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Americans have long been identified as a people of law and lawyers with an addiction to lawsuits. In Litigation Nation, Peter Charles Hoffer, one of America's most preeminent legal historians, charts the history of civil litigation from the seventeenth century to the present, using key cases pursued by ordinary people to illustrate how the civil courts have been a battlefront to contest the boundaries of permissible personal conduct in times of social and political change. Using representative case studies from each period--from defamation suits in seventeenth-century America to recent civil rights and gender discrimination lawsuits, Hoffer's concise and accessible history shows how litigation reflects the lives and values of ordinary Americans.
About the Author
Peter Charles Hoffer is Distinguished Research Professor of History at the University of Georgia and coeditor of the prizewinning series Landmark Law Cases and American Society. His nearly dozen books include The Supreme Court: An Essential History, The Historians' Paradox: The Study of History in Our Time, Brave New World: A History of Early America, Seven Fires: The Urban Infernos That Reshaped America, The Salem Witchcraft Trials: A Legal History, Roe v. Wade: The Abortion Rights Controversy in American History, and The Treason Trials of Aaron Burr.