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University of Detroit Mercy Law Review





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The contrast between the portrayal of Christianity and the treatment of earth-based religions by dominant legal discourse is illustrated throughout history. The true images of “saturated auratic [or] sacred elements-become-images” accompanies the division of history into fragments. The fragmented image is particularly important when it arises from a suppressed history or marginalized persons—these fragments are necessary to resist totalitarianism.

One way to see the call for “explosive fragments” is to acknowledge that the culture in the United States is already in ruins. Part of that dissolution is the loss of hegemony by white-male-European culture which can be seen in the Anglo-American-dominated United States. Another part is the very European-male discourse reaching the point of realization that the God of whom Christians spoke of was no longer present in the way that predecessor European ancestors thought, and that absence forever changed the speech of citizens in the United States.

When the dominant discourse can be dislocated, there is room for newness and difference. This is the globe with gaps, despite the deceptively smooth unity of a sphere. From the gaps, the new life can arise through the cracks. When they sprout, they will have already spoken with Patrisia Gonzales, read Sandra Cisneros, perhaps already have learned law from Beto Juarez, and so they will not be simply new or simply old. They will produce the kind of richly discordant fragments that disturb—even alarm, perhaps—but also create, educate and liberate.

Recommended Citation

Emily Albrink Hartigan, Law Fragments, 82 U. Det. Mercy L. Rev. 547 (2005).

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