The Jury and Democracy

The Jury and Democracy : How Jury Deliberation Promotes Civic Engagement and Political Participation

2.75 (4 ratings by Goodreads)
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Description

Alexis de Tocqueville, John Stuart Mill, and the U.S. Supreme Court have all alleged that jury service promotes democratic civic attitudes and political engagement. The Jury and Democracy is the first book to link jury service and political engagement, demonstrating how this institutionalized form of deliberation can contribute to democratic society not only in the United States but also in the many other countries using or experimenting with juries. The authors look at court and voting records for over thirteen thousand empanelled jurors from across the United States and draw from interviews with thousands more jurors to show that serving on a jury can trigger changes in how citizens view themselves, their peers, and their government. In fact, the study shows that this experience can significantly increase electoral turnout among infrequent voters. Partly as a result of these changing attitudes, jury service also sparks long-term shifts in media use, political action, and community group involvement. The original findings presented in this research advance modern theories of democracy, deliberation, and the law. Whereas Robert Putnam's Bowling Alone brought attention to informal social networks and voluntary associations, The Jury and Democracy demonstrates the importance of institutionalized, state-sponsored deliberative opportunities for citizens to meet and make legally-binding decisions. Legal debates over the proper use of the jury system have failed to account for the hidden civic costs of circumscribing jury service opportunities. The Jury and Democracy suggests how the jury's power might influence newer, deliberative visions of democracy and promote the transition to democracy in more autocratic societies.show more

Product details

  • Hardback | 288 pages
  • 160.02 x 236.22 x 22.86mm | 498.95g
  • Oxford University Press Inc
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • New.
  • 0195377303
  • 9780195377309

Review quote

The results produced by Gastil and his colleagues will go a long way to increasing readers' appreciation of juries, and of social science itself. * Jonathan Simon, Edinburgh Law Review *show more

About John Gastil

Gastil: Professor of Communication and Adjunct Professor of Political Science, University of Washington; Deess Director of Institutional Research, New Jersey Institute of Technology; Weiser: Professor of Law, University of Colorado; Simmons Lecturer in Communication, University of Washington (J.D. and former UPI political reporter)show more

Table of contents

LIST OF TABLES AND FIGURES; ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS; FURTHER READING; METHODOLOGICAL APPENDIX; ENDNOTES; REFERENCES; INDEX; ABOUT THE AUTHORSshow more

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