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Mark D. West

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780801449475

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9780801449475.001.0001

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(p.13) 1 Judging
Lovesick Japan

Mark D. West

Cornell University Press

This chapter illustrates what it means to be a member of the Japanese judiciary using a fictional character known as Judge Tanaka. Tanaka, an invention of the author, is based on a combination of facts from the literature and countless interactions over the last two decades with Japanese judges, lawyers, and prosecutors. It details Tanaka's education, family life, and career path. It then considers how a judge's training and career path might affect both the way he writes opinions and the way in which he views the world. It identifies the institutional influences and pressures that judges are subjected to. The analysis reveals that Japanese judges sometimes can be oblivious to the assumptions that underlie their prose.

Keywords:   Japanese judges, American judges, judiciary, judicial opinions

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