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Hastings Law Journal

Abstract

This Article considers the novel Pride and Prejudice, by Jane Austen, as a work of literature that invites the reader and legal scholar to reflect on the modes of proof we use in our quotidian factfinding, and how they vary from those available to adjudicatory factflnders under existing rules of evidence. In particular, the novel allows those interested in intersections between law and literature to explore the preferencing of live testimony as against hearsay; the use of character or propensity evidence; and the balance between truthseeking and confidentiality that underlies rules of privilege. Sometimes augmenting traditional legal and social science scholarship, sometimes challenging it, this Article examines some literary insights into the validity of those evidentiary rules.

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