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219.4T sec. 1 - Courts, Lawyers, and Justice in Film (Spring 2013)

Instructor: Laurent Mayali  (view instructor's teaching evaluations | profile)
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Units: 3
Meeting Time: W 3:35-6:15
Meeting Location: 132

Course Start: January 09, 2013
Course Control Number (Non-1Ls): 49577

This course will examine the representation of judicial process and the image of the legal profession in films. Courtroom dramas constitute an enduring and distinctive staple of American film culture. We will explore how this dramatic fiction influences a popular conception of justice that corresponds to a definite model of civil society and is not simply limited to the resolution of disputes. Discussions will be based on partial screening and analysis of films produced within the last fifty years. In addition to discussing forms of representation of the adjudication process we will examine the role of lawyers and judges, their social status, the political function of courts as public arenas, and the depiction of the relationship between legal rules, truth and morality. In examining the representation of lawyers as heroes or villains, we will focus on how the lawyer’s conduct in each film complied or violated the ABA Model Rules of Professional Conduct, which is the required text for this course.

This course satisfies the Professional Responsibility Requirement.

Exam Notes: P
Course Category: Legal Ethics and Professional Responsibility
This course is cross-listed in the following categories:
Legal Theory and History

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