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Synopsis

Combining political analysis, scientific reasoning, and an in-depth study of specific state supreme court cases, Black Robes, White Coats is an interdisciplinary examination of the tradition of "gatekeeping," the practice of deciding the admissibility of novel scientific evidence. Rebecca Harris systematically examines judicial policymaking in three areas:  forensic DNA, polygraphs, and psychological syndrome evidence to answer the question: Why is scientific evidence treated differently among various jurisdictions? These decisions have important implications for evaluating our judicial system and its ability to accurately develop scientific policy.

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