Date of Award

2018

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Graduate Group

English

First Advisor

Jed Esty

Abstract

This dissertation identifies and characterizes the literary genre of the “legal procedural”—a genre of cultural production that represents individuals’ passage through the criminal justice system, especially the jury trial. It argues that the genre formula became codified in the mid-20th-century United States in connection with the criminal rights movement or “due process revolution,” which nationally standardized many aspects of criminal procedure. Focusing on the years between 1930 and 1970, the dissertation explores how judicial and statutory changes, racial tensions, media-specific censorship patterns, and changing media ecologies contributed to the legal procedural’s increased popularity and formulaicism.

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Available to all on Saturday, September 11, 2021

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