Garrow's Law: The BBC Drama Revisited
For any of the five million people who saw the prime-time BBC series "Garrow's Law" this is an absorbing book. It is written by expert commentator John Hostettler who has studied Garrow extensively. The book uses the true facts on which the programme was based to compare drama and reality. Part I looks at the world in which the real life Garrow worked, marking out the main aspects of crime and punishment, which at the time operated primarily to deal with a troublesome but deprived and under-privileged strata of society: these unfortunates fed the conveyor belt to the courts, prisons and gallows. It was a world of few rights, effortless conviction, ready condemnation, draconian punishments and utter prejudice. This is the backdrop against which TV audiences were, in 2009, introduced to the story of the feisty individual who set out to change matters. Judicial order, procedural chaos and impudence in the face of authority fired the imagination of viewers as Garrow sought ever more ingenious ways of avoiding legal rules, such as those which prevented him from speaking directly to the jury, visiting a client in prison, or knowing the evidence in advance. Part II takes the reader through the cases portrayed in the TV series explaining their true origins and the jig-saw of facts, roles or events with which the scriptwriters wrestled in the interests of dramatic impact. The book compares the factional drama with what actually happened at the time. He also explains how, in reality, the law had its own fictions - such as "pious perjury" - to prevent accused people from being completely subjugated by the legal system. "Garrow's Law" is a minor masterpiece in which the author brings his immense knowledge of his subject to bear in a highly readable and entertaining work that will be of interest to lawyers and general public alike.
What people are saying - Write a review
We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.
accused acquitted address the jury adversary trial allowed Arthur Hill Assize court barrister benefit of clergy Billingsgate Boy Bryan Gibson capital offence charged client Clive Anderson confession convicted court courtroom crime Criminal Conversation death defence counsel drama eighteenth century England episode evidence fact felony FightforJustice Forrester found guilty Garrow and Erskine Garrow Society Garrow’s Law Hadfield Hamer Hanged hearsay Heath Hostettler and Richard indicted involved John Hostettler John Silvester Judge Buller jury find justice King’s Lady Sarah lawyers Lincoln’s London Lord Rosebery murder Newgate Prison no-counsel OBP Online www.oldbaileyonline.org Old Bailey pence Peter King Picton pious perjury points of law portrayed presumption of innocence programmes punishment rape reality Richard Braby robbery role rule Sarah Dore sentenced shillings Sir William Garrow slaves Southouse statute stealing stolen television theft thief-takers Thomas Erskine told Tony Marchant TV series Waterside Press whilst William Garrow