As the 19th-century French social theorist Alexis de Tocqueville remarked in his famous treatise, Democracy in America, “There is hardly any political question in the United States that does not sooner or later turn into a judicial question.” If Tocqueville were writing today, he’d probably add another observation: “Sooner or later every judicial question turns into a television show or a movie.” In this course, we watch films and television episodes dealing with lawyers and law: To Kill a Mockingbird (1962), Twelve Angry Men (1957), Dead Man Walking (1996), episodes of the first seasons of LA Law (1986) and Boston Legal (2004), and The Verdict (1982). Each film or episode sets the stage for discussions of storylines and important legal issues. Suggested book: Law and Popular Culture, by Michael Asimow and Shannon Mader (Peter Lang Publishing).
Mary Ann Wilson
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