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19 Disp. Resol. Mag. 27 (2012-2013)
Book Reviews

handle is hein.journals/disput19 and id is 165 raw text is: l Book ReviewI

Psychology for Lawyers:
Understanding the Human Factors
in Negotiation, Litigation and
Decision Making
A welcome volume that is thorough,
readable, entertaining and educational
Reviewed by Richard Birke

Starting with the Conclusion
Psychology for Lawyers is a great book.
are a transactional lawyer, a litigator, a m
or a mediator, you owe it to yourself to bu
and build its lessons into your practice. A
Robbenolt and Jean Sternlight have prod
that is thorough and readable, based in th
imminently practical, and as entertaining
it is educational.
The book consists of 15 chapters.
The first seven are a primer in
psychology, the next seven apply
psychology to legal practice and a
concluding chapter helps the reader
use psychology to achieve satisfac-
tion as a lawyer and as a person. In
a mere 460 pages, the authors bring
lawyers a wealth of information. In
my view, this is a clear best-in-class
and a must buy.
Now that the conclusion is all
wrapped up, we can work our way
back from the beginning. We'll
start with some history.
A Brief History of the
Intersection of Law and
Psychology

ror most of nistory, the intersec-
tion between law and psychology has been dominated
by a single question: whether a criminal defendant lacks
the capacity to understand whether his actions are right
or wrong. If Wikipedia is to be believed, not guilty by
reason of insanity was argued in the time of Hammurabi.

In more modern times, criminal law continued to
Whether you      dominate the law-and-psychology discussion. In her aptly
anaging partner  titled 1979 opus, Eyewitness Identification, psychologist
y it, read it    Elizabeth Loftus showed that cross-racial identifications
uthors Jennifer  tended to be particularly unreliable and that eyewitness
uced a book      testimony was subject to the vagaries of human memory.
Ieory yet              Even more recently, Lofrus and other psycholo-
as                           gists began to grapple with false, altered or
implanted memories in cases involving
allegations of sexual abuse.
00                                 While the intersection may
have expanded, a mere smidgen
of the law  that is, the criminal
law w  has enjoyed all the attention.
And it still enjoys the lion's share
of atrention by those who study the
science of mind. The MacArthur
Law and Neuroscience Project's
emphasis on free will and criminality
is just one example of this continu-
ing fascination.
For about the last three decades,
law professors teaching negotiation
have become aware of the relevance
of cognitive and behavioral
psychology to the practice of law.
In the late 1980s, professor
Robert Mnookin (then teaching

Richard Birke is Professor of Law and Director
of the Center for Dispute Resolution at the
Willamette University College of Law. He thanks
all his colleagues for their continued interest in law
and the science of the mind. He can be reached at
rbirke@willamette.edu or http://www.willamette.
edu/wucl/faculty/profiles/birke/

DISPUTE RESOLUTION MAGAZINE  SUMMER 2013  27

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