Choice Outstanding Academic Title 2003
Personal rights, such as the right to procreate—or not—and the right to die generate endless debate. This book maps out the legal, political, and ethical issues swirling around personal rights. Howard Ball shows how the Supreme Court has grappled with the right to reproduce and to abort, and takes on the issue of auto-euthanasia and assisted suicide, from Karen Ann Quinlan through Kevorkian and just recently to the Florida case of the woman who was paralyzed by a gunshot from her mother and who had the plug pulled on herself.
For the last half of the twentieth century, the justices of the Supreme Court have had to wrestle with new and difficult life and death questions for them as well as for doctors and their patients, medical ethicists, sociologists, medical practitioners, clergy, philosophers, law makers, and judges. The Supreme Court in the Intimate Lives of Americans offers a look at these issues as they emerged and examines the manner in which the men and women of the U.S. Supreme Court addressed them.
1 “Fundamental” Rights versus State Interests: The Balancing Process
2 Marriage and Marital Privacy
3 The “Rhapsody of the Unitary Family”
4 Motherhood or Not, That Is Her Decision
5 Raising the Child: “Father Knows Best”?
6 “Let Me Go!”: Death in the Family
7 Family and Personal Privacy in the Twenty-First Century
"...A worthy assessment of the law of intimate association and personal decision-making. For those intrigued by the Court's human side, Ball provides a sufficient glimpse without raising the curtain on its realm of privacy that the justices have strived to protect.”-Trial
"Despite the controversial content of many of the cases, Mr. Ball maintains an air of bemused detachment and does not openly take sides. This is not a polemic. With few exceptions, the prevailing tone is light and scholarly. The goal is to illuminate, not to persuade."-New York Law Journal
"In this truly fascinating and spellbinding work, Ball tells many tales."-Choice
"...A thorough summary of the trajectory of current case law on the legal regulation of U.S. citizens' intimate lives. . . . A valuable introduction to increasingly important and salient legal questions about the constitutional limits on the state's ability to shape intimate lives in the United States."- Political Science Quarterly
"A wonderful book dealing with personal issues each of us as individuals may face. Well-written and absorbing reading with numerous case studies that rely on materials and insider accounts from the private papers of the justices, this is a book for the general public and specialists alike to savor."-Sheldon Goldman,University of Massachusetts, Amherst