This Article is focused on a specific and important issue: the relationship of law to the social reality of group deprivations. From this primary issue, several important sub-issues are generated having a real and substantial impact upon the role of law in the management of group deprivations at every level of social organization (local, national, regional, and international). To focus on the social reality of group deprivations requires a critical starting point. This starting point is determining whether we are adequately describing or assaying the etiology of the human personality types and self-systems that are normally characterized by feelings, sentiments, and behaviors and which, in the context of group deprivations, are prejudice-prone and, in egregious circumstances, are the kinds of personalities that are central to the operations of the policies and practices of genocide. This Article seeks to provide insight into this process, and further suggests that an in-depth and realistic understanding of legal responses to these problems will contribute to the control, regulation, and eventual elimination of these problems. Our approach is to radically contextualize the social context that reproduces the anti-Semitic or otherwise prejudice-prone personality type. This Article essentially argues, that if we can provide a systematic, contextually-based, socially-constructed framework within which to understand the general conditions conducive to the reproduction of discrimination, prejudice, anti-Semitism, or the general outlook that seeks to depreciate and destroy “others”, we can provide a stronger scientific predicate from which to more carefully construct and evaluate the legal theories of racial discrimination, apartheid, and genocide. This kind of insight may demonstrate the links between these phenomena as they emerge from the larger social context of human relations. They may help us understand more adequately how we may modify our legal theories and strategies to place a greater emphasis on moderation and prevention, timing our critical interventions as lawyers to improve the human prospect, and minimizing the reproduction of the social dynamics of hate, prejudice, and extermination.
Winston P. Nagan & Vivile F. Rodin, Racism, Genocide, and Mass Murder: Toward a Legal Theory about Group Deprivations, 17 Nat'l Black L.J. 133 (2004), available at http://scholarship.law.ufl.edu/facultypub/613