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John Hart Ely's Democracy and Distrust is an ambitious attempt to create a new theory of judicial review, breaking away from both "interpretivism" and "noninterpretivism"-a division Professor Ely regards as a "false dichotomy" (p. vii). The book is brilliant and provocative, so much so that one fears less that its faults will be obscured-there is little danger that polemic critics will fail to pounce on them-than that the flash of Professor Ely's reasoning and the controversy it generates will distract us from the genuine importance of the insight that powers his analysis.


Democracy and Distrust: A Theory of Judicial Review. By John Hart Ely. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1980. Pp. 268. $15.00.

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