Literature, Law and Human Rights - ANU
studies regarding the relation between Law and Literature so far, it becomes more and more . “Literature Art” structured by law cases. So, we could say that. The law and literature movement focuses on the interdisciplinary connection between law and . While his work in legal rhetoric draws on literary theory, he contends that law is best analogized to the performing arts such as music . As the author of Law and Literature: A misunderstood Relationship (now in its third edition. As disciplines, law and the literary art share commonalities. For example . ( ); Richard A. Posner, Law And Literature: A Relation Reargued, 72 VA. L. REV.
This perspective seeks to enhance legal studies by examining and interpreting legal texts using the techniques of literary critics. Scholars such as White and Ronald Dworkin find greater relevance in law as literature because it maintains that the meaning of legal texts, such as written lawlike any other genre of literature, can only be discovered through interpretation. Although legal scholars have long considered both literary and legal texts in their study of the legal processthe recent degree to which the two seemingly separate genres interact has sparked great debates among scholars.
Law in literature[ edit ] The law in literature view is specifically concerned with the way in which legal situations are presented in literature. Generally, they place a high value on the "independent" view from which literary writers are able to see the law.
They believe that such authors have a lesson to teach legal scholars and lawyers alike about the human condition, and the law's effect on it.
Law, Literature and Art
The fictional situations presented in literature, these scholars assert, can tell a great deal about political and social situations, and the individual that often find themselves before the court. For example, Robert Weisberg believes that the law in literature offers fertile possibilities. He suggests that even though some literature cannot instruct its readers about legal situations, they can still educate law students about the human condition.
Weisbergprofessor at Cardozo School of Law is another leading scholar of law and literature. Following the lead of James Boyd White, he sees an intrinsic value in the use of literature as a means of discussing legal topics. Unlike White however, who places value on literature for its ability to stimulate critical thought and theory, Weisberg believes that literature should be valued for its ability to cause one to relate to others, and for the political and social contexts that novels, particularly those dealing with the law, grapple with.
For Weisberg, this is reason enough for its justification in the legal arena because such novels cause their students to reach conclusions regarding human understanding. In his study Poethics, Weisberg states that, "Poethics in its attention to legal communication and to the plight of those who are 'other', seeks to revitalize the ethical component of the law.
Weisberg rather wishes to use literature as a way of critiquing social institutions and legal norms. For him it is the subject matter of novels and not their rhetorical tools that make them important in instructing law students, as well as furthering understanding of legal matters for the independent law scholar. One example of his attempting to validate his stance of the effect of novels onto legal minds, is one where Weisberg cites a real life French lawyer living in France during the beginning of the deportation of French Jews to concentration camps.
The lawyer was attempting to assign the duty of determining Jewry of an individual with only two Jewish grandparents to the state, then controlled by the Nazis and collaborators. In describing the words chosen by the lawyer, Weisberg believes that the "masking of a moral crime" is a direct descendant of Nietzschean ressentiment, which is widely believed to be a philosophical outlook that permeates through the writings of Albert Camus and Kafka-literary authors whose works law and literature proponents cite often, including Weisberg.
His belief that ressentiment makes its way into the writings of lawyers, such as this Frenchman, is seen as enough of a reason for him to view legal novels as compelling arguments of the human condition and thus their validity towards legal debate.
Law as literature[ edit ] Law as literature scholars see value in the techniques employed by literary scholars. Generally speaking, these scholars may see legal text as a form of literature thus making literary critique and analysis of it possible. Unlike the law in literature scholars, these minds only see possibilities in the tools of literary theory, and not really the subject of the great novel that law students often find themselves reading, although most might agree that literature serves a purpose that allows for ethical development and growth within the student.
Cardozo was a proponent of law as literature. Convinced that style could not be separated from substance, Cardozo brought the Judicial process to life in lucid, eloquent prose sprinkled with humor, anecdotes, and practical allusions. According to White, Jane Austen 's Pride and Prejudice is meant to teach the reader how to read his way into becoming a member of an audience it defines-into becoming one who understands each shift of tone, who shares the perceptions and judgments the text invites him to make, and who feels the sentiments proper to the circumstances.
Both for its characters and readers, this novel is in a sense about reading and what reading means Ronald Dworkin also supports the arguments in favor of the use of literature to improve legal understanding.
In his article, Law as Interpretation, Dworkin stated, "I propose that we can improve our understanding of law by comparing legal interpretation with interpretation in other fields of knowledge, particularly literature. Law and Literature in Europe[ edit ] The Law and Literature movement in Europe is wide-ranging and fruitful and a number of networks in Europe are significant to the movement.
Gaakeer's influence is also reflected in her publications, for example Hope Springs Eternal: Berlin and New York: De Gruyter, and In the Grip of the Law: Trials, Prisons and the Space Between. Law and Literature in Europe is energetic but at times less self-promoting than its American counterpart.
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Current Legal Issues Volume 2: Law and edited by Michael Freeman and Andrew Lewis are testament to the number of approaches opened up by this interdisciplinary approach. In the United Kingdom, scholars of note include Maria Aristodemou, with her Law and Literature from her to eternity, which looks at a number of texts from ancient Greek to modern day novels from a feminist and postmodern perspective.
Adam Gearey's Law and Aesthetics provides a discussion of aesthetics and ethics relevant to contemporary law and literature scholarship, and to the development of postmodern jurisprudence, using a range of reference points from classical literature, from Sophocles to Shelley to Nietzsche. Professor Ian Ward, Law and Literature: Possibilities and Perspectives which considers a range of texts from Shakespeareto children's literature, to Ivan Klima and Umberto Eco and, more recently Ward's Law, Text, Terror, looking at the phenomena of terror and the rhetoric of terrorism tracing back through literature, popular culture and politics.
One Hundred Years of Law, Literature and Philosophy explores in particular feminist and existential questions as well as genre movements relating to caselaw combined with works by, for example, Thomas HardyJ. BallardJohn FowlesJ. CoetzeeVirginia Woolf and Iris Murdochwhilst her Secrets and Laws provides a range of essays on legal and political issues of note, from ethics, terrorism and identity to notions of obscenity, rape, sex and violence, through the prism of poetry, W.
Thomas as well as 19th and 20th century works of fiction. These instances of European outputs in the Law and Literature movement are in no way representative of the large literature to be found in articles written by the above named scholars as well as others in the field.
Significant contributions to the movement[ edit ] This article may require cleanup to meet Wikipedia's quality standards. The specific problem is: Please help improve this article if you can.
While his work in legal rhetoric draws on literary theory, he contends that law is best analogized to the performing arts such as music and dramarather than to literature. For this reason, there is little to no work in which Balkin analyzes literature's relevance to the law, but his applications of the argument through other artistic mediums gain him admission to this discussion, as well.
In his views on politics and its effect on legal standards, Balkin adheres to what is known as " partisan entrenchment ". This theory states that the party that controls the White House can place in the federal courts judges and justices that share the President 's political views. This in turn affects Supreme Court justices and, ultimately, constitutional doctrine.
His work focuses upon the construction in narrative of the person, either in law with examples from the domain of Convention refugees and undocumented immigrants or in literary texts, from a perspective that references the work of Mikhail Mikhailovich BakhtinPierre BourdieuMarc AngenotMichael Holquist and others.
A longtime contributor to the field, and a frequent reviewer of texts relating to it, Barsky works to bring a humanistic approach that favors dialogism, storytelling and empathy to the many realms captured by the idea of border-crossing.
His works include a trilogy of law-literature informed books Undocumented Immigrants in an Era of Arbitrary Law, Routledge Law ; Arguing and Justifying, Ashgate ; Constructing a Productive Other, John Benjaminsand to the on-line open access border-crossing journal called AmeriQuests: Narrative, Law and Literature www.
Law and literature
Because much of the legal corpus to which he refers emanates from the realm of migration studies, he has also contributed widely to translation and interpretations studies, with reference to both legal and literary texts. She started her career at the University of Bologna. Her fields of research are: Renaissance theatre, Postmodern fiction, literature and visual arts, the influence of Plato on twentieth-century English literature, law and literature. She started working on law and literature in the s and introduced the topic in Italy.
Among her latest publications: Fables of the Law. Fairy Tales in a Legal Context. Inhe was a visiting professor in the Faculty of Law at Makerere UniversityUganda; and in a visiting professor at the University of Pretoria.
His present project concerns political justice. In The Times Higher EducationGearey commented on his work on James Joyce 's chaotic novel, Finnegans Wakeand ideas of law, stating I tried to trace the ways the account of the giving of the law in the Bible fed into the narratives of Finnegans Wake. Just as the Bible appropriated the Jewish Old Test-ament account of the law, Joyce's novel, in its turn, rewrote the Gospel narratives, to become a messianic announcement of the female messiah and a new law of love.
These ideas could not have been thought without the encouragement of the " critical legal theory " scene. Whether in Palestine, Africa, or Alice Springs, law, literature and human rights are different languages for expressing injustice and for demanding redress. Each are powerful in their own way. A lawyer, an activist, a novelist, and a film-maker are all storytellers with specific means at their disposal, and specific goals in mind.
But just what kinds of storytelling are they? How do they differ from one another, and how do they influence one another?
In what ways does literature in the broadest sense help organize our understanding of human rights, and mobilize legal responses? And on the other hand, in what ways does law constitute a literature of human rights, and with what consequences? Learning Outcomes By the conclusion of this course, students who have successfully completed all of the requirements will have the knowledge and skills to: Define and critically analyse keywords and concepts shared across the disciplines of law, literature and human rights, including testimony, witness, reconciliation, memory, justice, and recognition 2.
Compare, contrast and reflect on contemporary scholarship on and critical approaches to human rights and humanitarian intervention 3. Recognise, distinguish and appraise research and methods in the fields of law and literature, memory studies, and theory, with specific reference to major case studies chosen to illustrate, particularize, and interrogate core concepts and historical episodes 4.
Analyse the discourses and genres that intersect in constructing the relationship between law, literature, and human rights. Evaluate and compare a complex variety of textual sources—laws, legal decisions, and commissions of inquiry, as well as novels, films, and artworks—and to critically analyse and reflect on their strategies, blind spots, problems, and effects.
Independently problem-solve by evaluating, planning, and executing advanced interdisciplinary scholarship and research Indicative Assessment 1.