This seminar focuses on the interface between two important subjects:
law and popular culture. Before class, students will see a series of
films or television shows relating to law, lawyers, and the legal
system. There is also a weekly homework assignment based on materials
in the assigned text and the assigned film or TV show. We will discuss
the pop culture treatment of subjects such as the adversary system, good
and bad lawyers, female lawyers, lawyers from the LGBT community,
minority lawyers, the work life of lawyers, legal education, ethical
issues, the jury system, and criminal and civil justice. The seminar
discussions will draw on film theory and film-making technique to deepen
understanding of the interrelationship between law and popular
culture. The discussions will illuminate the ways in which pop culture
products both reflect and change social views about law and lawyers.
The assigned text is Michael Asimow & Shannon Mader, "Law and
Popular Culture: A Course Book" (Peter Lang 2d ed. 2013). The grade is
based primarily on a paper (on a subject chosen by each student that is
related in some way to law and popular culture).
This course is not offered in 2019 - 2020.