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Heroes, Rascals, and the Law

Constitutional Encounters in Mississippi History

James L. Robertson (author)

ISBN: 9781496819949

Publication Date: Jan 2019

Format: Hardback

Focuses on folk encountering their constitutions and laws, in their courthouses and country stores, and in their daily lives, animating otherwise dry parchments. Robertson begins at statehood and continues through war and depression, well into the 1940s. Each story is sprinkled with fascinating but heretofore unearthed facts and circumstances.
£47.50

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As a law student at Ole Miss, I was easily bored with the study of constitutional law. However, I did not have the benefit of studying under a gifted storyteller like Jimmy Robertson (he taught me federal procedure). This collection is a delightful romp through the highs and lows of Mississippi's struggle to govern itself.

-John Grisham


James L. Robertson focuses on folk encountering their constitutions and laws, in their courthouses and country stores, and in their daily lives, animating otherwise dry and inaccessible parchments. Robertson begins at statehood and continues through war and depression, well into the 1940s. He tells of slaves petitioning for freedom, populist sentiments fueling abnegation of the rule of law, the state's many schemes for enticing Yankee capital to lift a people from poverty, and its sometimes tragic, always colorful romance with whiskey after the demise of national Prohibition. Each story is sprinkled with fascinating but heretofore unearthed facts and circumstances.

Robertson delves into the prejudices and practices of the times, local landscapes, and daily life and its dependence on our social compact. He offers the unique perspective of a judge, lawyer, scholar, and history buff, each role having tempered the lessons of the others. He focuses on a people, enriching encounters most know little about. Tales of understanding and humanity covering 130 years of heroes, rascals, and ordinary folk-with a bundle of engaging surprises-leave the reader pretty sure there's nothing quite like Mississippi history told by a sage observer.
Pages 624
Dimensions 229 x 152
Date Published 30 Jan 2019
Publisher University Press of Mississippi
Subject/s Regional & national history   Legal history   Constitutional & administrative law   Constitution: government & the state  
James L. Robertson, Jackson, Mississippi, is a practicing lawyer and active life member of the American Law Institute. A graduate of the Harvard Law School, he served on the Supreme Court of Mississippi for ten years and taught law at the University of Mississippi and elsewhere.

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