The Police Power

Patriarchy and the Foundations of American Government

Markus Dirk Dubber

Columbia University Press

The Police Power

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Pub Date: September 2005

ISBN: 9780231132077

288 Pages

Format: Paperback

List Price: $36.00£29.95

Pub Date: January 2005

ISBN: 9780231132060

288 Pages

Format: Hardcover

List Price: $105.00£87.95

Pub Date: January 2005

ISBN: 9780231506953

288 Pages

Format: E-book

List Price: $35.99£29.95

The Police Power

Patriarchy and the Foundations of American Government

Markus Dirk Dubber

Columbia University Press

Mention the phrase Homeland Security and heated debates emerge about state uses and abuses of legal authority. This timely book is a comprehensive treatise on the constitutional and legal history behind the power of the modern state to police its citizens.

Dubber explores the roots of the power to police—the most expansive and least limitable of governmental powers—by focusing on its most obvious and problematic manifestation: criminal law. He argues that the defining characteristics of this power, including the inability to accurately define it, reflect its origins in the discretionary and virtually limitless patriarchal power of the householder over his household. The paradox of patriarchal police power as the most troubling yet least scrutinized of governmental powers can begin to be resolved by subjecting this branch of government to the critical analysis it merits. Dubber shows us that the question must become how can the police power and criminal law together serve the goals of social equity that define and give direction to contemporary democratic societies? This book goes to the heart of this neglected but crucial topic.
An ambitious new work of political science...His historical model is already raising interest amongst theorists of crime and policing in Britain. T. Endicott, J. Getzler & E. Peel, Properties of Law: Essays in Honor of James W. Harris
This book is useful for at least two reasons: 1) It places in historical perspective some aspects of 20th century criminal law that are difficult to understand otherwise; 2) It helps explain the relative inattention to limits on the criminal law. Jack E. Call, Law and Politics Book Review
The volume begins with a fascinating discussion of household governance in old Rome... Dubber places 20th-century criminal law in historical perspective and examines the relationship between police power and patriarchy... Recommended. Choice
Dubber covers it all. Arthur L. Rizer III, Federal Lawyer
The Police Power is a deeply penetrating appraisal of the historical expression and significance of the concept of police. Christopher Tomlins, Buffalo Law Review
This is a fascinating book -- provocative and demanding. Michael Willrich, The American Historical Review
Acknowledgments
Introduction: "The Power to Govern Men and Things"
Part I. From Household Governance to Political Economy
1. Police as Patria Potestas
2. Blackstone's Police
3. Continental Police Science
Part II. American Police Power
4. Policing the New Republic
5. Definition by Exclusion
6. Police Power and Commerce Power
Part III. Police, Law, Criminal Law
7. The Forgotten Power and the Problem of Legitimation
8. The Law of Police: Internal and External Constraints
9. Lochner's Law and Substantive Due Process
Conclusion: Toward a Critical Analysis of Police and Punishment
Index

About the Author

Markus Dirk Dubber is professor of law and director of the Buffalo Criminal Law Center at the State University of New York, Buffalo. He is the author of Victims in the War on Crime: The Use and Abuse of Victims'Rights, American Criminal Law (with Mark Kelman) and Criminal Law: Model Penal Code.