He Said, She Said

I am fascinated by the unfolding Brett Kavanaugh – Christine Blasey Ford drama – this is quintessential “he said – she said”, in its almost purest form. In my lecture(s) for this past year’s parashas Vayeshev,1 with its archetypal narrative of Joseph and Potiphar’s wife, I broached a highly speculative argument for granting some credibility …

Buckbeak in the Dock

For C.S., who provided me with the volume from which our opening case study is drawn. Buckbeak and His Defense Team In Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, the obnoxious and supercilious Draco Malfoy foolishly and boorishly insults Buckbeak the hippogriff, and instantly receives his richly deserved comeuppance: Trotting toward them were a dozen …

Justifiable Homicide, Assault and Retaliation – Part II

We recently discussed some parallels between the Halachah and what had been, until fairly recently, the law in various Southern states excusing a husband or father who murdered the paramour of his wife or daughter. The most fascinating of the legal rationales of the Southern states is the idea that a man shouldn’t be punished …