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Thurgood Marshall: Justice for All.

You don't have to be a legal eagle or beagle to take up constitutional law professor Roger Goldman and attorney David Gallen's Thurgood Marshall: Justice for All. To be sure, the book will be more riveting for law students, scholars and practitioners. But this tribute cum assessment cum something-of-a-biography is accessible to anyone who wants to add to his or her appreciation of the man known as "Mr. Civil Rights" and who during his Supreme Court tenure (1967-1991) was one of the staunchest defenders of individual rights.

Part 1 provides an overview of Marshall's life and career through material published previously. The "recollections" include: Juan Williams' 1990 Washington Post magazine feature "Marshall's Law"; Judge Constance Baker Motley's "My Personal Debt to Thurgood Marshall" from the November 1991 Yale Law Journal; an excerpt from Randall Bland's 1973 biography Private Pressure on Public Law, and essays from Harvard Law Review's "A Tribute to Justice Thurgood Marshall." These essays, which appeared in November 1991, were penned by former Associate Justice William J. Brennan Jr., who served with Marshall on the Supreme Court for 23 years, Harvard Law School professor Martha Minow, who clerked for him, and Judge Robert Carter, who worked with him for 15 years in the NAACP.

Goldman's lengthy essay, "The Jurisprudence of Justice Thurgood Marshall," examines Marshall's constitutional vision and the how and why of his decisions on various cases.

For the average reader, the most intimidating, but ultimately most valuable, part of the book is the last. It contains 15 opinions (majority, concurring and dissenting) that Marshall himself wrote in the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s. From these passages, the reader can truly grasp how Marshall's enormous compassion and extraordinary mind combined to make him a justice for all who unflinchingly withstood the cruel and insensitive "powers that be" who struggled to render him powerless.
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Copyright 1992, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Author:Bolden, Tonya
Publication:Black Enterprise
Article Type:Book Review
Date:Dec 1, 1992
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