Some Limitations of Experimental Psychologists' Criticism of the American Trial
33 Pages Posted: 7 Jan 2015
Date Written: January 5, 2015
Psychologists have for decades conducted experiments that have suggested severe limitations on human cognitive capacities. Many have suggested that these results have important, and largely negative, consequences for an assessment of the reliability of the American trial. They have pointed persuasively at the disturbing number of exonerations of those convicted after trial. And some have gone on to make specific proposals for the incremental, and sometimes radical, changes in the conduct of the adversary trial. This essay places these studies in a normative context and argues that they are more powerful in suggesting changes in pretrial process than in the conduct of trial itself.
Keywords: trial, psychology, evidence, social science
JEL Classification: K10, K30
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation