Mid-Atlantic Popular &
American Culture Association

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Law and Popular Culture

Area chairs

Regina Kaley Stuart
Sharon Yamen (St. John's University, St.John's University)

Law pervades modern society. Increasingly, courts decide some of the most fundamental social and economic issues of society, including such hot button issues as abortion, the death penalty, the right of privacy, gun control, same-sex marriage, affirmative action, and public support of religious schools.

Popular culture teaches people most of what they know, or think they know, about law, lawyers, and legal institutions. Modern media concerning law has major effects on what people believe and how they act as jurors, lawyers, clients, or lawmakers. Popular culture also raises fascinating questions about public policy and legal ethics.

This area explores 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 lives of lawyers, legal education, ethical issues, the jury system, and criminal and civil justice. Proposals that illuminate the ways pop culture both reflects and changes social views about law and lawyers are encouraged from scholars and students of all disciplines.

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