Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Up in the Sky! It's...Cogent Legal Analysis?

Would the Joker be eligible for an insanity defense? Is discrimination against the X-Men mutants actually a hate crime? And could a masked Spider-Man really testify in court without violating the Confrontation Clause? These questions and more are tackled in The Law of Superheroes, a fun new title in the Goodson Law Library's James D. Cox Legal Fiction Collection.

Attorney-authors James Daily and Ryan Davidson also maintain the popular blog Law and the Multiverse (a recent finalist for the ABA Journal's "Blawg 100" awards), which since 2010 has examined a variety of legal issues through the prism of comic-book geekery. Their book compiles and expands the blog's analysis within thirteen different areas of comic-related law, including criminal law and procedure, tort and insurance concerns, and even immigration issues for world-traveling (and space-traveling) crime-fighters.

If you'd like to read more about superheroes and the law...you just might be out of luck if this particular title is checked out. However, a subject heading search of the Duke Libraries' Catalog for "Superheroes in Literature" turns up some amusing other results across campus, including a philosophy series available in e-book format (The Avengers and Philosophy: Earth's Mightiest Thinkers and Spider-Man and Philosophy: The Web of Inquiry). And while this superhero text might stand alone on the Goodson Law Library shelves, the Cox Legal Fiction Collection does contain many other titles related to law and fiction, including The Law and Harry Potter and Legally Correct Fairy Tales. For help locating more fun reads, be sure to Ask a Librarian.

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