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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 51034 Find in a Library
Title: PRIVACY IN THE COURTS - LAW AND SOCIAL REALITY
Journal: JOURNAL OF SOCIAL ISSUES  Volume:33  Issue:3  Dated:(1977)  Pages:138-153
Author(s): H A LEVIN; F ASKIN
Corporate Author: Soc for the Psychological Study of Social Issues
United States of America
Date Published: 1977
Page Count: 16
Sponsoring Agency: National Science Foundation
Arlington, VA 22230
Soc for the Psychological Study of Social Issues
Ann Arbor, MI 48106
Grant Number: SOC 74-17520 A01
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: TO UNDERSTAND HOW SOCIAL SCIENCE KNOWLEDGE CAN BE INCORPORATED INTO THE LEGAL PROCESS, DECISIONS OF THE U.S. SUPREME COURT WHERE DETERMINATIONS RESTED ON PSYCHOLOGICAL DIMENSIONS OF PRIVACY WERE EXAMINED.
Abstract: TEN DECISIONS BETWEEN 1965 AND 1974 IN WHICH DETERMINATIONS OF SOCIAL FACT WERE CRUCIAL TO THE ESTABLISHMENT OF LEGAL RULES WERE REVIEWED. BOTH COURT OPINIONS AND CASE RECORDS WERE STUDIED TO DETERMINE WHETHER SOCIAL SCIENCE THEORY OR DATA HAD BEEN RELIED UPON BY LITIGANTS. PSYCHOLOGISTS AND OTHER SOCIAL SCIENTISTS WERE EMPLOYED AS CONSULTANTS TO EVALUATE COURT DETERMINATIONS AND THE QUALITY OF ADVOCACY. IN ANALYZING THE FINDINGS, IT WAS NECESSARY TO KEEP IN MIND THE DIFFERENCES IN VIEWPOINT AND PROCEDURES BETWEEN SOCIAL SCIENCE AND LAW. AN EXAMINATION OF FULL COURT RECORDS IN THE 10 CASES INDICATED THAT THERE WAS SELDOM ANY SERIOUS EFFORT BY LAWYERS TO PRESENT EMPIRICAL DATA OR EXPERT OPINION ADDRESSING THE SOCIAL FACT ISSUE. THE QUESTION OF PRIVACY PRESENTED SPECIAL DIFFICULTIES. IT WAS DETERMINED THAT BEHAVIORAL SCIENCE MIGHT CONTRIBUTE TO MORE RATIONAL JUDICIAL DECISIONS BY DEFINING SOME OF THE CONDITIONS UNDER WHICH INTRUSIONS OF PRIVACY MIGHT BE PERMISSIBLE. THE DEFINITIONAL PROBLEM WITH THE LEGAL CONCEPT OF PRIVACY EMERGED MOST FREQUENTLY IN CASES WHERE THE LEGAL STANDARD WAS A 'REASONABLE EXPECTATION' OF PRIVACY. TWO MAJOR RECOMMENDATIONS ARE OFFERED TO DEVELOP A SOCIAL SCIENCE APPROACH TO THE LAW OF PRIVACY: (1) LAWYERS ENGAGED IN PUBLIC POLICY LITIGATION SHOULD DEVELOP CLOSER COLLABORATION WITH SOCIAL SCIENTISTS; AND (2) THE MOVEMENT TO INCLUDE SOCIAL SCIENTISTS ON LAW SCHOOL FACULTIES SHOULD BE SUPPORTED AND ACCELERATED. REFERENCES ARE INCLUDED. (DEP)
Index Term(s): Behavioral and Social Sciences; Evidence; Judicial decisions; Right of privacy
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=51034

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