Law and the Movies

Austin Sarat
Austin Sarat
Amherst College

Austin Sarat is William Nelson Cromwell professor of Jurisprudence and Political Science at Amherst College in Amherst, Massachusetts. He has written, co-written, or edited more than ninety books in the fields of law and political science. Professor Sarat has received the Stan Wheeler Award for his excellence as a teacher and mentor, awarded by the Law and Society Association.

Overview

Law in Film – What We Can Learn from Classic Movies

Filmmakers love the law for its suspenseful and dramatic qualities. They have turned to legal subjects from the very origins of moving pictures and continue to do so today. But do they accurately portray, or substantively distort, the legal processes that they depict? And whether accurate or not, what lessons can we learn about law–and about film–from examining the many films that portray police, lawyers, trials, and punishments? In this course, Amherst Professor Austin Sarat will discuss such classic movies as: Judgment at Nuremberg (1961), To Kill a Mockingbird (1962), The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (1962).

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