Misconceptions Of The Legal Profession In Modern Society

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The legal profession, including law schools, not only leaves an impression of prestige and justice on the general public, it also carries a very different cognation. Hierarchy and social order contracts lay embedded in the legal system, much as the underlying of societal structure today. With the impact of television crime shows and movies based on criminal events, the general public gains a fictional awareness of the ways in which the justice system works. In actuality the discourse of law not only focuses on reform in relation to social morals, but it also sets up a mirror image of the hierarchical world in which we live. Through various authors this paper will aim to simplify the misconceptions of the legal justice system through pop culture, …show more content…
As noted before the perception of the legal system is often skewed due to images of pop culture. However, this misrepresentation of the legal profession dates back long before these movies and shows existed. In Marc Galanter’s article “Changing Legal Consciousness in America: The View From Joke Corpus” we see how the ideals of the legal profession have been discriminated against since the 1950’s. Galanter focuses on three forms of jokes that related to legal consciousness: before the law, with the law, and against the law. (2001 p. 2224) These jokes often portray a negative idealization of the legal system and lawyers. They focus on aspects of greed, and the presumption of high-class individuals that could care less of the middle-class society, because in all they are simply a paycheck. These jokes have placed increasing negative portrayals of the legal profession, which in turn contributes to many different reactions to the outcomes of legal proceedings. As society lacks faith in the legal profession, the profession continues to gain a less-caring attitude towards society. In Kaplans article on cause lawyering, he illustrates how fighting against societal rules in the courtroom is often looked down upon by jurors. While lawyers who use the legal profession to fight for social injustices, such …show more content…
Hierarchal structure has been evident in law school since the beginning of the practice. Many believe that the main focus of law school is to teach students the codes and conducts of the legal profession. However in actuality there is a constant competition between students, and this battle is used to illustrate the struggle they will face in entering the legal profession of the real world. Kennedy’s article on “Legal Education and the Reproduction of Hierarchy” explains just that. The very nature of the law schools focus on the competitiveness of students to gain rank withi their peers, and assimilation to current law culture. The capitalistic view of law schools and its profession implement a very white, male-centric, middle-class vision. This idea of what the legal profession consists of, is all too often reflected on students in a form of desired success. Thus according to Kennedy results in students aspiring to be this way; white, male, middle-class tone. (1982 p.605) Lastly Kennedy suggests a new reform of the legal school curriculum, one that focuses on the success of students into the legal profession as opposed the constant completive reflection of the real world. However it is clear that the conceptions of the legal profession do not end once law school is finished. As mentions previously law school is designed to

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