The Legal Capacity of Deaf Persons in the Decisions of the Imperial Court of Justice between 1880 and 1900
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The inclusion of deaf persons in a judicial setting raised questions about their ability to bear witness, be convicted, conclude a marriage, make a will and, of course, about the ability of the court to communicate with them. In their decisions, the judges of the Imperial Court of Justice in Leipzig shed light on their interpretation of the capacity of deaf persons to participate in the legal realm. The motivation of their judgments drew comparisons with different categories of citizens to compensate for incomplete laws. They also took into account developments in the education of deaf persons regarding their communication skills and mental capacity. The decisions illustrate that legal and scientific knowledge was closely linked to the effect that deaf persons were granted full legal capacity.
Enescu,R. and Werner, A. (2016) 'The Legal Capacity of Deaf Persons in the Decisions of the Imperial Court of Justice between 1880 and 1900', Law, Crime and History, 6(2), pp.31-53. Available at: https://pearl.plymouth.ac.uk/handle/10026.1/8935
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