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Law and Popular Culture

A Course Book (2nd Edition)


Michael Asimow and Shannon Mader

Both law and popular culture pervade our lives. Popular culture constructs our perceptions of law and changes the way that players in the legal system behave. Now in its second edition, Law and Popular Culture: A Course Book explores the interface between two subjects of enormous importance to everyone – law and popular culture.
Each chapter takes a particular legally themed film or television show, such as Philadelphia, Dead Man Walking, or Law and Order, treating it as both a cultural text and a legal text.
The new edition has been updated with new photos and includes greater emphasis on television than in the first edition because there are so many DVDs of older TV shows now available.
Law and Popular Culture is written in an accessible and engaging style, without theoretical jargon, and can serve as a basic text for undergraduates or graduate courses and be taught by anyone who enjoys pop culture and is interested in law. An instructor’s manual is available on request from the publisher and author.
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Praise for the First Edition of Law and Popular Culture


‘‘Law and Popular Culture combines film history, social history and legal issues in a readable and engaging way. Better still, the course Asimow and Mader propose will help any would-be lawyer to see his or her role in society in a more humane and responsible way. But best of all, this book and this course offer entertainment as well as enlightenment. I never wanted to be a lawyer, but if this course had been around when I was in college, I would happily have embraced it.’’

—Richard Schickel, Film critic, Time Magazine, documentarian, and author of numerous books on film history and criticism

‘‘Law and Popular Culture: A Course Book will become an instant classic. Focusing on exemplary films and television shows about law and lawyers, Asimow and Mader present insightful readings and interpretations of both their narrative and visual elements. This book provides a stellar example of the kind of intellectual excitement that can be generated in the classroom and a truly invaluable resource for teachers and students eager to explore the increasing important connections of law and popular culture.’’

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