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The Road to Abolition?The Future of Capital Punishment in the United States$
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Charles J. Jr. Ogletree and Austin Sarat

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780814762172

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814762172.001.0001

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Rocked but Still Rolling

Rocked but Still Rolling

The Enduring Institution of Capital Punishment in Historical and Comparative Perspective

Chapter:
(p.139) 5 Rocked but Still Rolling
Source:
The Road to Abolition?
Author(s):

Michael McCann

David T. Johnson

Publisher:
NYU Press
DOI:10.18574/nyu/9780814762172.003.0005

This chapter examines the prospects for complete, sustained, de jure abolition of the death penalty in the United States using a comparative, historical, and institutionalist framework. It considers the complexities of abolition and postwar politics in the United States and goes on to discuss postwar abolition in Europe. It then explores the ways that the civil rights movement during the Cold War shaped the future of capital punishment in the United States. It also assesses the role of Congress and the Supreme Court in the abolition discourse, along with the prospects for the diffusion of abolition among individual states. Finally, it outlines some possibilities for change, including the likelihood that the “road to abolition” will be reversed and that death penalty could be resurrected in one or more European jurisdictions.

Keywords:   abolition of death penalty, United States, politics, Europe, civil rights movement, capital punishment, Congress, Supreme Court, death penalty

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