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One of the most powerful words in the English language, "corruption" is also one of the most troubled concepts in law. According to Laura Underkuffler, it is a concept based on religiously revealed ideas of good and evil. But the notion of corruption defies the ordinary categories by which law defines crimes - categories that punish acts, not character, and that eschew punishment on the basis of religion and emotion. Drawing on contemporary examples - including former assembly woman Diane Gordon and former governor Rod Blagojevich - Underkuffler explores the implications and dangers of maintaining such an archaic concept at the heart of criminal law.