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Channeling Justice: Television and the Legal Profession


May 6, 2011 9:00am - 4:00pm

Room 180
Paul Brest Hall, Munger Graduate Center
Building 4, 555 Salvatierra Walk
Stanford, CA 94305

About the event: From The Defenders and Perry Mason back in the 60s through L.A. Law, The Practice and Ally McBeal in the 80s and 90s, to Law & Order, Boston Legal, The Good Wife and Harry’s Law in the present, the television industry has generated an endless stream of dramatic series involving law and lawyers. Millions of viewers have acquired vast amounts of information (and mis-information) about the legal system from watching these shows. Television is the place that most people learn about the civil and criminal justice systems.

This conference focuses on the legal profession as it is shown on television. It examines the business aspect of legal television - creating legal shows, writing scripts, and acting. It also focuses on the cultural aspects of the genre. How ethical are television lawyers? What is the audience leanring about big firms, criminal prosecution and defense, or women lawyers? How are social issues dramatices in lawyer shows? How has the representation of televsion lawyers changed over the decades?

Conference Agenda:

Welcome @ 9:00 AM
Dean Larry Kramer

Law as Entertainment (and Business): Creating and Producing Lawyer Shows @ 9:15 AM
Moderator: Dean Larry Kramer
David E. Kelley: "Creating law franchises on television"
Marshall Goldberg: “So you want to write for tv . . . . “
Professor Charles Rosenberg: "Six rules for tv legal advisers”
Camryn Manheim: “I’m not a lawyer but I play them on television”

Prime Time Law: What Does Television Tell Us About Lawyers @ 10:45 AM
Moderator: Professor Larry Marshall
Professor Deborah Rhode: “Legal practice in prime time; legal practice in real time”
Professor Bill Simon: "Moral pluck: legal ethics in popular culture”
Professor Ticien Sassoubre: "Law’s fatal attraction: women lawyers on tv"
Professor Paul Bergman: “Rumpole of the Bailey

Lunchtime Talk:
The intersection of creativity and commerce in the entertainment industry @ 12:30

Ben Silverman, award-winning television producer and former co-chair of NBC Entertainment

Facts and Fantasies About Lawyers on Television @1:15 PM
Moderator: Professor John Denvir
Professor Michael Asimow: “From Perry to Harry―lawyers on television”
Professor David Ginsburg: "The Defenders: breaking controversial ground”
Professor Philip N. Meyer: “Why L.A. Law still matters”
Shannon Mader: “Politics of Law and Order

Lawyer Television and American Popular Culture @ 2:45 PM
Moderator: Professor Robert Gordon
Professor George Fisher: "Teaching evidence with tv case law"
Professor Nora Engstrom: “Attorney advertising and access to justice”
Professor Terry Diggs: "From the small screen to the big picture: David E. Kelley's commentaries on the role – and effectiveness – of law”
Professor Lawrence Friedman: “Judging the judge shows”

Reception @ 4:15 pm in Crocker Garden
Registration Information: This event is free and open to the public. Click here to RSVP for this event

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