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BOTH SIDES NOW One Man’s Journey Through Womanhood Dhillon Khosla Jeremy P. Tarcher/Penguin/$25.95 What does it take to be a man? That’s the central question of Dhillon Khosla’s “Both Sides Now,” probably the only piece of nonfiction you’ll read this summer where someone says, “We shouldn’t have to have hysterectomies just to prove we are men.” Khosla � a longtime Ninth Circuit staff lawyer � would disagree with that statement, made at a female-to-male transgender support group. Realizing at age 28 that, despite his then-female body, he was undoubtedly male, Khosla embarked on years of excruciating surgeries � and equally ardent analysis of himself and the people around him � transformed his body from top to bottom, inside and out. The book walks through the entire process, a string of detailed memories of Khosla’s interactions with friends, family, doctors and strangers, in addition to dreams and the incremental epiphanies that convinced him to go through with the process. Khosla has left little out of the book, which seems to be written entirely without artifice: Its descriptions of the medical and interpersonal milestones in a rough transition from a female body to a male one are forthright � the “lower surgery” almost killed him � and the book is packed with observations about gender roles and interactions that people who haven’t gone through such an experience are unlikely to have noticed. For example, former lovers � and even Khosla’s mother � observe that, even as a woman and lesbian, he exhibited stereotypical male traits. He was sloppy, and gave the “kind of gifts I got from my boyfriends,” an ex-girlfriend said, things that weren’t at all suited to her, “like you just couldn’t think from that perspective.” The book has relatively little on the Ninth Circuit, where Khosla worked on and off for a decade before leaving early this year. But there is plenty on the efforts of co-workers � mainly other staff lawyers� to create and enforce a climate of acceptance. And included in the book’s acknowledgements are expressions of gratitude to the court’s clerk, a staff supervisor, and the judges � “for focusing more on the content of my mind than the body in which it is housed (perhaps simply due to the enormous caseload before you).” Of course, for Khosla, the body is as important as any other part of his identity. Indeed, Khosla writes often about longing for a male chest, and the ability to laze about in a tank top, unshaven. In the end, Khosla’s book tells us that appearances can count as much as anything else. And judging by the picture on the book’s cover, it’s clear that the stubble, the tank top and pecs do, in large part, make the man � no one would confuse that image for a woman. � Justin Scheck THE ART OF JUSTICE: An Eyewitness View of Thirty Infamous Trials Marilyn Church, Lou Young Quirk Books/$50 For more than three decades, Marilyn Church has been on hand to capture the trials and profiles of some of America’s most notorious killers. Recently, some of her best work was collected in “The Art of Justice: An Eyewitness View of Thirty Infamous Trials,” co-authored with veteran reporter Lou Young. Looking through the trials in the book is like taking a walking tour of recent American legal history. Here is the 1974 trial of former Attorney General John Mitchell, convicted on perjury charges in the Watergate scandal. A few pages on is the case of Karen Ann Quinlan, who lingered in a coma for months as her parents and her doctors battled over the novel idea that a person has a right to die. Church also captured the case of then-Israeli Defense Minister Ariel Sharon, who sued Time magazine for $50 million for saying he had orchestrated the massacre of hundreds of Palestinian civilians in a refugee camp during Israel’s 1982 Lebanon War. But undoubtedly the most entertaining portraits come from the book’s rich trove of famous murder trials. Church brings the inherent drama of trial to life as jurors gape and cover their mouths in horror when confronting pictures of the victim, or when the accused breaks on the stand or explodes in fury. It’s an open question how much longer the world will need courtroom sketch artists. Already, many states are opening the courthouse doors to cameras, and Congress is actively considering doing the same in federal courts. Could courtroom sketch artists be going the way of the blacksmith? Church concedes it’s possible but thinks photography would have a hard time capturing the drama and tension that the sketch artist can find in the static setting of the courtroom. “Besides,” she adds, leafing through a thick stack of her sketches, “these are so beautiful to look at.” � Legal Times LITIGATING IN THE SHADOW OF DEATH Defense Attorneys in Capital Cases Welsh S. White University of Michigan Press/$21.95 The University of Pittsburgh law school lost a well-respected death penalty expert last year. The late Professor Welsh White was the author of three books on capital punishment, among them “The Death Penalty in the Nineties: An Examination of the Modern System of Capital Punishment.” “Litigating in the Shadow of Death,” his last, is a comprehensive guide to the litigation of capital cases. As the publisher describes it, White explains how attorneys’ skills and abilities influence the determination of which capital defendants are sentenced to death. He shows how highly skilled defense attorneys are able to avoid death sentences for their clients in even the most aggravated cases, and how a group of dedicated lawyers have begun to transform the public’s perception of capital punishment by revealing the extent to which innocent defendants are being sentenced to death. “Welsh White was one of the nation’s leading experts on the death penalty and was one of the most distinguished faculty members in the long history of the University of Pittsburgh School of Law,” said Pitt Chancellor Mark Nordenberg, a former dean of Pitt’s School of Law. “His carefully crafted scholarly work helped change views of the death penalty and the way that it is administered.” � Kathy McBride All Marketers Are Liars: The Power of Telling Authentic Stories in a Low-Trust World Seth Godin Portfolio Hardcover/$23.95 There are books out there to make better lawyers that come from sources one might not initially suspect. The art of persuasion is an indispensable art, and the single best book on persuasion may be Seth Godin’s “All Marketers Are Liars: The Power of Telling Authentic Stories in a Low-Trust World.” In 173 pages, he lucidly sets out how people frame issues and how they learn to figure out a story to fit their pre-existing frame. This is useful, especially for GCs in litigation of employment disputes. A frame wins, or at least damps-down damages, when it creates an alternate reality to one presented by the employee at trial. Jurors already are pre-wired in their belief system about which frames will resonate with them and which won’t. The trick is to find the frame that triggers the desired response. In persuasion, as Godin points out, trying to change a decision-maker’s frame often brings failure; scoping out the most likely frames and developing facts that fit them more often delivers success. � Texas Lawyer

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