This article argues that in both Joseph Andrews (1742) and Tom Jones (1749), Henry Fielding, who practiced law and wrote novels when both were undergoing significant transformations, takes what could have been archetypal scenes of rape and rescue and makes them illuminating explorations of how juries determine the truth. In presenting these attempted rape scenes within the implicit format of a contemporary rape trial, Fielding directs the reader to observe the missteps in the process of judicial decision-making, as well as the steps and missteps in his or her own determination of the trustworthiness of characters and their testimony.
Bloom Bissonette, Melissa (2016). "“A Right Judgment”: Rape Trial Conventions Revisited in Joseph Andrews and Tom Jones." Law, Culture and the Humanities 15.3, 844-861.
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This is the author's accepted version of an article published in Law, Culture and the Humanities, volume 15 issue 3, pages 844-861. Article first published online: November 15, 2016; Issue published: October 1, 2019.
The final published version of this article is available through SAGE Journals: https://dx.doi.org/10.1177/1743872116675821.