Interested in Law? Audio Books Can Help

April 20, 2011

There are many interesting facets of the legal system to explore, whether your goal is to learn some history, work out your own legal troubles, or earn a law degree and pass the bar.  But no matter what drives you to explore the ins and outs of everything legal; from litigation to contract negotiation, criminal proceedings to civil suits, prosecution to persecution, or frivolous and fraudulent lawsuits to class-action settlements; you can find an audio book that will help you to understand the building blocks and particular precedents that make up our nation’s vast legal network.  Here are just a few that you may find interesting, whether you’re a graduate of Harvard Law School or an average Joe facing trumped up possession charges.

1.       The Majesty of Law: Reflections of a Supreme Court Justice [Abridged] by Sandra Day O’Connor.  O’Connor is probably best known as the first woman appointed to the highest court in the United States (although she has also been lauded for her liberal policies concerning abortion rights, separation of church and state, and affirmative action).  In this audio book, which has been collected and refined from various lectures given throughout her career, O’Connor touches on the history of our legal system (starting with the Magna Carta), the need for jury reform, and of course, some of her fellow justices.

2.       In Nixon’s Web: A Year in the Crosshairs of Watergate by L. Patrick Gray and Ed Gray.  One of the most riveting and rarely seen events to play out in our legal system is the impeachment of a president, and Nixon falls at the top of the list for the ones that got away.  With impeachment over the Watergate scandal imminent, he resigned his office in 1974.  But in the year leading up to him vacating office, L. Patrick Gray was the acting director of the FBI, leading the investigation into the president and his conspiracy to commit burglary, bribery, and other criminal acts.  This first-hand account of the proceedings from the man responsible for bringing down the president is a must-listen for anyone interested in the legal web surrounding our nation’s leaders.

3.       Nullification: How to Resist Federal Tyranny in the 21st Century by Thomas E. Woods.  Did you know that individuals and corporate entities aren’t the only ones subject to the rule of law?  Our legal system also allows for the rights of states.  Our forefathers set out to create a democratic nation in which anyone could challenge the governing authority, and this audio book discusses the “rightful remedy” by which states may stop unjust federal laws from stripping us of our legal rights.  Nullification seeks to address the issue at the heart of our country’s foundation: an escape from tyranny and oppression.  Anyone interested in this ideal should definitely take a listen.

4.       The Politically Incorrect Guide to the Constitution by Kevin Gutzman.  Yet another offering from the P.I.G. series, this audio book takes a stab at everything constitutional (including the document itself and those who claim to uphold it).  Why do judges control constitutional law when it should be up to the states?  How did a few biased individuals become “we, the people”?  If you’re asking these same questions, make a date with this irreverent audio book.

5.       Packing the Court: The Rise of Judicial Power and the Coming Crisis of the Supreme Court by James MacGregor Burns.  This book addresses not only the history of this unelected institution, but also the validity of their claim over judicial review.  A concise and sometimes frightening look at the legal power held by nine appointed officials.

Sarah Danielson writes for Corboy and Demetrio, a personal injury law firm based in Chicago, Illinois. Check out the corporate website for information on Corboy & Demetrio community service.


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