January 20, 2012

Clarence Darrow: Attorney for the Damned

Clarence Darrow: Attorney for the DamnedClarence Darrow: Attorney for the Damned by John A. Farrell

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Ideally, this would be a 4.5 star book, but I'll give it the bump. Beyond the famous Scopes trial, good labor liberals know Darrow defended the McNamara brothers in the LA Times bombing case.

He also defended the poor. Mobsters.

And, rich people presumably politically conservative. And, despite his acquittal on charges, he may well have tried to bribe jurors in the McNamara case.

Darrow was sui generis, in other words, and this book shows that well.

He was also a freethinker, a womanizer and more.

He said he defended the rich because he needed money somehow, but ... it seems more than that.

And, some of his closest friends of earlier life, like Edgar Lee Masters,k had become estranged from him years before he died.

This is an informative bio of the what of Darrow's life, but Farrell doesn't quite get all the why, IMO. Hence, the ideal rating of 4.5 stars.

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