Book ID: CBB126372089

The Science of Proof: Forensic Medicine in Modern France (2022)


Claire Cage (Author)

Cambridge University Press
Publication date: 2022
Language: English

Publication Date: 2022
Physical Details: 237

The Science of Proof traces the rise of forensic medicine in late eighteenth- and nineteenth-century France and examines its implications for our understanding of expert authority. Tying real life cases to broader debates, the book analyzes how new forms of medical and scientific knowledge, many of which were pioneered in France, were contested, but ultimately accepted, and applied to legal problems and the administration of justice. The growing authority of medical experts in the French legal arena was nonetheless subject to sharp criticism and scepticism. The professional development of medicolegal expertise and its influence in criminal courts sparked debates about the extent to which it could reveal truth, furnish legal proof, and serve justice. Drawing on a wide base of archival and printed sources, Claire Cage reveals tensions between uncertainty about the reliability of forensic evidence and a new confidence in the power of scientific inquiry to establish guilt, innocence, and legal responsibility.

Reviewed By

Review Brandon Long (2023) Review of "The Science of Proof: Forensic Medicine in Modern France". HOPOS (pp. 199-202). unapi

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Authors & Contributors
Bertomeu Sánchez, José Ramón
Asen, Daniel
Bates, Victoria
Becker, Elisa M.
Burns, Susan L.
Carson, John S.
Ambix: Journal of the Society for the History of Alchemy and Chemistry
Asclepio: Archivo Iberoamericano de Historia de la Medicina
East Asian Science, Technology and Society: An International Journal
French Historical Studies
History of Psychiatry
HOST: Journal of History of Science and Technology
Central European University Press
Palgrave Macmillan
Publicacions de la Universitat de València
Rutgers University Press
University of Wisconsin at Madison
Medicine and law
Forensic medicine
Trials (law)
Criminal law
Ingrassia, Giovanni Filippo
Orfila, Mathieu Joseph Bonaventure
Windham, William Frederick
Mata i Fontanet, Pere
Time Periods
19th century
18th century
17th century
16th century
20th century
20th century, early
United States
Great Britain
Harvard University

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