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An assumption made by a court and embodied in various legal doctrines that a fact or concept is true when in actuality it is not true, or when it is likely to be equally false and true.

A legal fiction is created for the purpose of promoting the ends of justice. A common-law action, for example, allowed a father to bring suit against his daughter's seducer, based on the legal fiction of the loss of her services. Similarly, the law of torts encompasses the legal fiction of the rule of Vicarious Liability, which renders an employer responsible for the civil wrongs of his or her employees that are committed during their course of employment. Even though the employer generally is uninvolved in the actual act constituting the tort, the law holds the employer responsible since, through a legal fiction, he or she is deemed to be in direct control of the employee's actions. A seller of real estate might, for example, be liable in an action for Fraud committed by his or her agent in the course of a sale.

West's Encyclopedia of American Law, edition 2. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


Collins Dictionary of Law © W.J. Stewart, 2006
References in periodicals archive ?
In the 1990s, Linda Forrest stressed the need for young female audiences to find themselves represented in sports fiction so as to help them fight gender stereotyping at such an essential point in their lives (1993, 38).
"Fictional Denials of Female Empowerment: A Feminist Analysis of Young Adult Sports Fiction." Sociology of Sport Journal 15 (3): 231-62.
"Representations of Female Athletes in Young Adult Sports Fiction: Issues and Intersections of Race and Gender." In Gatz, Messner and Ball-Rokeach 2002, 69-93.
"Sports Fiction for Young Women: Not Enough of a Good Thing." Voice of Youth Advocates 14: 89-90.
A second reading may in fact be an essential approach to sports fiction written by women while we operate in a heavily gender-biased society.
Dreaming of Heroes: American Sports Fiction, 1868-1980.
* Combines sports fiction and mystery/adventure into one book
The stories along the way treat familiar themes in sports fiction: the problem with fanaticism among fans, the logic of dealing with loss, the critical element of self-esteem, the lure of cheating, the intrinsic bond between achievement on the field and identity, the vast impress of pride on games, the bloodthirst (at times here literal) that becomes sports.
My Dreaming of Heroes differed from the books by Messenger, Umphlett, and Higgs in the attention it paid to "popular" as well as "literary" sports fiction. ("Popular" really needs two sets of quotation marks, the second one to signal the irony that the "popular" sports fiction written chiefly by sports journalists has rarely been commercially "popular.") Developing a working bibliography in the early 1970s, when I was writing my dissertation, required considerable digging.
The challenge today for the revised history of American sports fiction derives not from scarcity but from overabundance.
Here, I suspect, one would find the outlines of a genre of sports fiction gradually come into focus.