Encyclopedia of American Civil Rights and Liberties

International Legal Research

Information about Encyclopedia of American Civil Rights and Liberties in free legal resources:

Treaties & Agreements

International Organizations

Jurisprudence $ Commentary

European Union

IP Law

Encyclopedia of American Civil Rights and Liberties

  • Title: Encyclopedia of American Civil Rights and Liberties
  • Volumes: 3v.
  • ISBN: 9780313327582
    Publication Date: 2006-09-31

  • Editors: Otis H. Stephens, Scheb, John M., Stephens, Otis H., Stooksbury, Kara.
  • Copyright: 2006.
  • Pages: 1,342
  • Publisher: Greenwood
  • Subjects: Civil and political rights, Encyclopedias, United States of America, Reference, Civil Rights, Political Freedom & Security
  • Library of Congress Subject Headings for this publication: Civil rights — United States — Cases. Civil rights — United States — Encyclopedias.

Encyclopedia of American Civil Rights and Liberties Reviews

Booklist Reference Review

“American civil rights and liberties have a historical past and active presence in our society. This encyclopedia provides an overview of more than 600 topics in both the civil rights and liberties arenas. Laws, Supreme Court decisions, major historical developments and social movements, prominent individuals, groups and organizations, government departments and agencies, and issues and hot topics are discussed at length. Entries cover Civil Rights Acts from 1866 to 1988, equal employment, due process, religious freedom, animal rights, and reproductive rights. Additionally, they cover less-familiar topics like Bad tendency test, Bifurcated trail, and Inchoate offenses. Current topics like the USA PATRIOT ACT and Children’s Internet Protection Act are also included.

The 627 entries are arranged alphabetically, and most include a byline, see also references,
and a bibliography. Back matter consists of an index, a bibliography, a list of contributors
(teachers, scholars, judges, and law practitioners), and the text of 38 primary documents.
These include the Magna Carta, the Gettysburg Address, the Seneca Falls Declaration, and
the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Front matter includes an A-Z list of entries and a guide to related topics that categorizes all
627 entries into 20 broader topics like “Court Decisions,” “Organizations” and “Search and
Seizure.” It is is a perfect starting place for college term papers and for those wanting a
big-picture look at topics like abortion, the gay rights movement, segregation, and more.

Titles of this nature have been frequent in the last five years, and libraries may already own
several. The Encyclopedia of American Civil Liberties (Routledge, 2006) contains similar
information, with twice as many entries. Its coverage of case law is extensive; however, it
does not include primary documents. Sharpe’s companion Encyclopedia of Civil Rights in
America (1997) and Encyclopedia of Civil Liberties in America (2004) between them have more
entries, but the civil rights set is not as current.

Finally, Minority Rights in America (CQ, 2002) is a smaller, single-volume work but with a
larger collection of primary documents. The Greenwood set’s advantage is that it provides
current coverage of both civil rights and liberties. Its price is midrange among similar titles,
and it should be considered for academic and public libraries.

Source: Polanka, Sue (2007). Encyclopedia of American Civil Rights and Liberties (Review). Booklist, 103 (11), 70.

“The Encyclopedia of Civil Liberties in America (Sharpe, 2005), with 700 entries, is a more introductory resource. Encyclopedia of American Civil Rights and Liberties (Greenwood, 2006) provides an overview of more than 600 topics in both the civil rights and liberties arenas. Encyclopedia of American Civil Liberties offers more comprehensive treatment of its topic and is highly recommended for public, academic, and law libraries. Jan Lewis”

Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

Reference Reviews

Bob Duckett (bibliographer and Former Reference Librarian, Bradford, United Kingdom) made a review of the Encyclopedia, which was published in Reference Reviews, Vol. 21 Iss: 7, pp.20 – 21 (Emerald Group Publishing Limited).

Publisher Comments

Spanning three volumes, this comprehensive encyclopedia of over six hundred entries covers the full range of civil rights and liberties in America from the antecedents of the Bill of Rights through the most recent controversies over political and social issues, including abortion, free speech, religious liberty, voting rights, and the guarantees of equality. It also addresses the civil rights and liberties issues stemming from America’s ongoing war on terrorism. Detailed entries include key concepts, historical events and developments, major trials and appellate court decisions, landmark legislation, legal doctrines, important personalities, and key organizations and agencies. Entries have an objective tone, allowing readers to draw their own conclusions.

Designed as an up-to-date reference source for students, scholars, and citizens, the encyclopedia will help broaden and heighten understanding and appreciation for the wide range of issues associated with civil rights and liberties in the United States, and is the most sophisticated treatment available. The volumes of the encyclopedia consist of original entries, arranged alphabetically, on many current hot-button issues as well as in-depth coverage of the rights Americans hold sacred. Written by experts in the field, including attorneys, judges, and legal scholars, the encyclopedia takes a historical-legal approach, providing important information on the background and development of an issue or event.

The third volume concludes with over three dozen essential primary documents, including landmark statutes, key court decisions, and influential essays.


Annotation by Book News, Inc.: From Abington School District v. Schempp (one of the Supreme Court’s school prayer decisions) to zoning, this three-volume encyclopedia 627 alphabetical entries on issues of civil rights, defined as those that arise from the democratic commitment to equality, and civil liberties, defined as related to the disputes pitting claims of individual freedom against assertions of governmental power, in American history. Editors Stephens (political science and constitutional law, U. of Tennessee), Scheb (political science and legal studies, U. of Tennessee), and Stooksbury (political science, Carson-Newman College) include coverage of important court decisions and legislation; important individuals, such as Rosa Parks and John Peter Zenger; governmental and non-governmental groups and organizations; controversial issues; and key legal and philosophical concepts and doctrines. Specific examples include rights of crime victims, discrimination, the Equal Pay Act, the Ku Klux Klan, use of force by law enforcement, courts-martial, Operation Rescue, Jesse Jackson, the American Civil Liberties Union, Thomas Paine, the doctrine of original intent, the Freedom of Information Act, and public nudity, to cite a few. In addition to the entries, over 100 pages of primary documents are presented in the third volume, along with a table of cases, a bibliography, and an index.

Table of Contents

  • Contents
  • List of Entries
  • Guide to Related Topics
  • Preface
  • Acknowledgments
  • Encyclopedia of American Civil Liberties and Rights
  • Primary Documents
  • Table of Cases
  • Bibliography
  • Index
  • List of Contributors

See Also

Encyclopedia of American Civil Liberties

Leave a Comment