Brian Dickson: A Judge's Journey

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University of Toronto Press, 2003 - Biography & Autobiography - 576 pages
2 Reviews

When Brian Dickson was appointed in 1973, the Supreme Court of Canada was preoccupied with run-of-the-mill disputes. By the time he retired as Chief Justice of Canada in 1990, the Court had become a major national institution, very much in the public eye. The Court's decisions, reforming large areas of private and public law under the Charter of Rights, were the subject of intense public interest and concern.

Brian Dickson played a leading role in this transformation. Engaging and incisive, Brian Dickson: A Judge's Journey traces Dickson's life from a Depression-era boyhood in Saskatchewan, to the battlefields of Normandy, the boardrooms of corporate Canada and high judicial office, and provides an inside look at the work of the Supreme Court during its most crucial period. Dickson's journey was an important part of the evolution of the Canadian judiciary and of Canada itself. Sharpe and Roach have written an accessible biography of one of Canada's greatest legal figures that provides new insights into the work of Canada's highest court.

 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Meggo - LibraryThing

One of the better justices of the Supreme Court of Canada in recent years, Dickson wrote many of the seminal judgments relating to the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. A very well written ... Read full review

User Review - Flag as inappropriate

A superb review has already been written. R. W. Kosta's
"Shilling for Judges - Brian Dickson and His Biographers" in the McGill University law journal, is compelling and justifiably critical of
the nature of the Dickson biography, the relationship of one of the biographers to Dickson himself, Dickson's control over the biographer and the highly selective choice of files in the National Archives (made by Dickson himself) on which the biography is based, and fundamental points which the two partisan biographers have failed to discuss.
You must absolutely read this review before you read the biography, itself:
http://lawjournal.mcgill.ca/userfiles/other/7780672-1224869781_Kostal.pdf
 

Contents

A Judges Journey
3
Life before the Bench 19161963
27
Prairie Upbringing
29
Off to War
48
Law and Business Family and Community
65
A Judge in Manitoba 19631973
89
Queens Bench
91
Court of Appeal
110
Chief Justice and the Charter 19841990
283
Chief Justice
285
Building the Foundations
309
Continuity and Change
337
Cracks in the Foundations
350
Feeling the Strain
377
Equality Rights
397
Language Rights and National Unity
412

The Supreme Court 19731984
133
Starting Slowly
135
Gaining Ground
158
Compassion and Equity
179
Write and Rewrite
202
Fault and Free Will
218
Balanced Federalism
240
Patriation of the Constitution
263
The Honour of the Crown
442
Retirement 19901998
463
Dickson of Canada
465
NOTES
483
ILLUSTRATION CREDITS
553
INDEX
555
Copyright

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About the author (2003)

Robert J. Sharpe is a judge with the Ontario Court of Appeal. Kent Roach is Professor of Law at the University of Toronto.

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