Document Type

Book Chapter

Publication Date



This chapter examines the right of criminal defendants to be confronted with the witnesses against them. It first provides an overview of the nature, purposes, and costs of the confrontation right before discussing the history of the confrontation right. It then considers a range of issues that may arise in any jurisdiction (or in some cases, any common law jurisdiction) with regard to the confrontation right, using as a touchstone the current status of the right in the United States. In particular, it describes situations in which the question of whether a statement is testimonial typically arises, such as fresh accusations and forensic laboratory reports. It also explores the waiver and forfeiture of the confrontation right, a child’s testimony, and remote testimony as well as the extent of constitutionally protected impeachment before concluding with an analysis of the confrontation right in Europe.


Reproduced by permission of Oxford University Press. Available as The Oxford Handbook of Criminal Process