Sol Azuelos-Atias - A Pragmatic Analysis of Legal Proofs of Criminal Intent

Sol Azuelos-Atias - A Pragmatic Analysis of Legal Proofs of Criminal Intent
Publisher: John Benjamins Publishing Co | 2007-07-26 | ISBN: 9027227160 | File type: PDF | 180 pages | 5.03 mb

A Pragmatic Analysis of Legal Proofs of Criminal Intent is a detailed investigation of proofs of criminal intent in Israeli courtrooms. The book analyses linguistic, pragmatic, interpretative and argumentative strategies used by Israeli lawyers and judges in order to examine the defendant’s intention. There can be no doubt that this subject is worthy of a thorough investigation. A person’s intention is a psychological phenomenon and therefore, unless the defendant chooses to confess his intent, it cannot be proven directly ?either by evidence or by witnesses?testimonies. The defendant’s intention must be inferred usually from the overall circumstances of the case; verbal and situational contexts, cultural and ideological assumptions and implicatures should be taken into account. The linguistic analysis of these inferences presented here is necessarily comprehensive: it requires consideration of a variety of theoretical frameworks including speech act theory, discourse analysis, argumentation theory, polyphony theory and text linguistics.
“This book is a very valuable contribution to scholars who deal with the intersection of linguistics and law. Although its setting is the Israeli courtroom, the author’s analyses and findings can be generalized easily to other legal contexts and systems. Azuelos-Atias gives a detailed linguistic analysis of the ways Israeli lawyers and judges use pragmatic, grammatical, interpretive, and legal argument strategies in courtroom discourse. In doing so, the book joins other recent studies of language of judges and lawyers, providing evidence of the growing importance of linguistics to this field.?
Roger W. Shuy, Distinguished Research Professor of Linguistics, Emeritus, Georgetown University, Washington, DC
“In A Pragmatic Analysis of Legal Proofs of Criminal Intent, Sol Azuelos-Atias does an excellent job. From an interdisciplinary pragmatic perspective, which takes account of linguistic and situational contexts as well as cultural and ideological presuppositions and implicatures, she provides illuminating insights into the working of the Israeli legal system, with its typical mixture of features from Common Law, Continental Law and Jewish Law. In my view, her lucid and informative analyses of the linguistic, pragmatic, interpretative and argumentative strategies Israeli prosecutors, defence counsels and judges use in discussions of legal proof of criminal intent are a stimulating invitation to carry out similar pragmatic ?and comparative ?analyses of the discourse proceedings in other legal systems.?
Frans H. van Eemeren, University of Amsterdam

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