Dec 20, 2011

Exemplars of Good Legal Writing - The Green Bag

The board of advisers of The Green Bag has selected "exemplars of good legal writing from the year just passed." They honor exemplars in seven categories, Opinions of the Court, Dissents/Concurrences, Books, Long Articles, Short Articles, News & Editorial, and Miscellany.

Congratulations to Professor Michael McConnell, recognized for a wonderful short piece about Professor Larry Tribe's scholarly integrity in this summer's debt ceiling discussions. McConnell's simple eloquence (and his typical grace to a colleague with whom he often disagrees) is obvious even in six short paragraphs.

In Books, the board recognized The Collapse of American Criminal Justice (Harvard 2011) by William Stuntz, the beloved Harvard Law Professor who passed away in March. I haven't read it yet, but Justice Stevens has. His conclusion, in his New York Review of Books essay:
Professor Stuntz’s account of the “collapse” of an overgrown system of criminal law enforcement is well worth reading. It is full of interesting historical discussion. It accurately describes the magnitude of the twin injustices in the administration of our criminal law. It should motivate voters and legislators to take action to minimize those injustices.
I imagine they are all well worth reading (hey, The Green Bag knows its stuff), but I was also particularly drawn to Adam White's interesting profile of Justice Alito in the Weekly Standard, The Burkean Justice, recognized as exemplary writing in the Short Articles category.

HT: Thanks to my colleague Kim Colby for bringing this list to my attention.


  1. Thanks, Hugh! Welcome.

    I look forward to hearing from you again.