LITERARY CRITICISMS OF LAW. By Guyora Binder [dagger] and Robert Weisberg [double dagger]. Princeton: Princeton University Press. 2000. 544 pp. What do you get when you cross a lawyer and a literary critic? Why get them, these amphibious figures, at all? Why get them now? Why get them here, basking on the banks of the legal training grounds, rather than on the beaches of belles-lettres? In Literary Criticisms of Law, Guyora Binder and Robert Weisberg trace the genealogy of this hybrid and, as it turns out, hydra-headed species of scholar (the law-as-lit scholar, for short). Other authors have ventured over some of this terrain, but Binder and Weisberg offer what is, by far, indeed, by miles and miles and miles, the most extensive expedition of its kind. They search for ancestors, locate remote and close family branches, pass judgment on the health of surviving offspring, and identify lines likely to thrive in future generations. Members of the law-as-lit family are sure to be intrigued by their findings. (Wouldn't you be interested to learn and, yes, have it be known that your forefathers include such worthies as Husserl, John Brown, Cicero, Schleiermacher, Lincoln, Plato, Burke, Derrida, Aristotle, Machiavelli, Hegel & co.?) So will some law school colleagues and acquaintances. (Have you heard about that guy who gets to teach ancient Norse tall tales--in the original, of course, and to law students, no less--while you have to shepherd the little lambs through the Carriage of Goods by Sea Act? Well, you might not know it from looking at him, but he just happens to be the great-great-grandnephew of Nietzsche, twice or thrice removed. Explains a lot, doesn't it?) But Binder and Weisberg say that they are aiming to attract a much larger crowd, one that includes pure law types, pure lit types, law-crits, lit-crits, scholars of every size and shape, all the way down (or up) to those worthy bystanders known as the "educated general readers." (1) The result? Exactly what you'd expect when authors try to bite off something for every reader to chew: The fare is tastefully presented, bland, and there is an awful lot of it.