Academic journal article ETC.: A Review of General Semantics

Scorpions: The Battles and Triumphs of FDR's Great Supreme Court Justices

Academic journal article ETC.: A Review of General Semantics

Scorpions: The Battles and Triumphs of FDR's Great Supreme Court Justices

Article excerpt

Noah Feldman. Scorpions: The Battles and Triumphs of FDR's Great Supreme Court Justices. New York: Twelve, 2010.

In this compelling biography, Harvard University law professor Noah Feldman tells the story of four larger-than-life Supreme Court justices and the role they had in the making of the modern Constitution.

It would be hard to envision four more dissimilar men. Felix Frankfurter was an ebullient, erudite, immigrant Jew who started as America's leading liberal and ended as its most famous judicial conservative. Hugo Black was a Ku Klux Klansman who became a passionate promoter of free speech and civil rights. Robert Jackson was a backcountry lawyer who went from trying cases about farm animals to conducting the Nuremberg Trials, the most important international hearing ever held. And William 0. Douglas was a tall-tale-telling, four-times-married Westerner who barely missed becoming president but expanded individual freedom exponentially--a 1975 Time article called Douglas 'the most doctrinaire and committed civil libertarian ever to sit on the court. …

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