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Full-Text Articles in Law

Shakespeare In The Courts, Douglas E. Abrams May 2021

Shakespeare In The Courts, Douglas E. Abrams

Faculty Publications

This article continues the theme of recent “Writing It Right” articles in the Journal of the Missouri Bar. These articles describe how federal and state judges today frequently accent their opinions’ substantive or procedural rulings with references to cultural markers that can resonate with the advocates, parties, and judges who comprise the opinions’ readership. The courts’ broad array of cultural references demonstrates versatility. Some of my early articles in the Journal profiled judicial opinions that referenced terminologies, rules, and traditions of baseball, football, and other sports. Together these sports’ mass audiences help define American culture.

Later my Journal articles profiled ...


Criminal Law Drafting Manual, Jean Mangan Jan 2021

Criminal Law Drafting Manual, Jean Mangan

Books

This textbook was created under a Round 19 Mini-Grant. It is hosted on the Open ALG (Affordable Learning Georgia) Projects platform.


Justice Ginsburg, Civil Procedure Professor And Champion Of Judicial Federalism, Rodger D. Citron Jan 2021

Justice Ginsburg, Civil Procedure Professor And Champion Of Judicial Federalism, Rodger D. Citron

Touro Law Review

No abstract provided.


The Cognitive Power Of Analogies In The Legal Writing Classroom, Patricia G. Montana Jan 2021

The Cognitive Power Of Analogies In The Legal Writing Classroom, Patricia G. Montana

Faculty Publications

(Excerpt)

New law students traditionally learn better when they can connect what they are learning to a familiar non-legal experience. Therefore, the use of an analogy, which can be defined as a comparison showing the similarities of two otherwise unlike things to help explain an idea or concept, is an obvious way to facilitate a student’s connection between the new and what is already known. An analogy is a logical step in introducing the complex processes of legal research and analysis by attempting to simplify the alien structure of summarizing that legal research and analysis into a coherent piece ...


The Folly Of The Embedded Full Citation: How The Bluebook And Alwd Manuals Encourage Weak Legal Writing, Ben Bratman Jan 2021

The Folly Of The Embedded Full Citation: How The Bluebook And Alwd Manuals Encourage Weak Legal Writing, Ben Bratman

Articles

Unfortunately, the two most prominent citation guides for legal writing, the Bluebook and the ALWD Guide to Legal Citation, include provisions allowing legal writers to embed a full citation to legal authority as a grammatical element of a textual sentences. As a result, both beginning and experienced legal writers do not hesitate to burden their sentences with the clutter of full citations. Most dubiously, legal writers far too often begin the topic sentence of a paragraph with the phrase “In [case name],” followed by an embedded citation, thereby wrongly emphasizing the case name instead of the legal principle that the ...


Amicus Curiae Briefs: A Message From The 7th Circuit, Douglas E. Abrams Nov 2020

Amicus Curiae Briefs: A Message From The 7th Circuit, Douglas E. Abrams

Faculty Publications

Like other brief writers, the amicus brief’s writer must heed the court’s rules of practice and procedure, including rules that prescribe a brief’s maximum page length. But a brief writer can meet the court’s circumstances and expectations without going to the max. A few months before he ascended to the Supreme Court bench in 1943, D.C. Circuit Judge Wiley B. Rutledge advised advocates to strike a balance by being “as brief as one can be consistent with adequate and clear presentation of his case."

An amicus’ prudent approach to concise brief writing is to adapt ...


References To Children's Stories And Fairy Tales In Judicial Opinions And Written Advocacy, Douglas E. Abrams Sep 2020

References To Children's Stories And Fairy Tales In Judicial Opinions And Written Advocacy, Douglas E. Abrams

Faculty Publications

Jones v. State is typical of recent state and federal court decisions that have spiced substantive or procedural points with references to classic children’s stories or classic fairy tales. These literary resources have won places in American popular culture and are likely generally familiar to readers, especially when (as in Jones) the court provides any necessary context explaining the resource’s relevance to the decision.

In previous Journal of The Missouri Bar articles, I have written about judges’ invocation of an array of influential cultural markers that are generally familiar to Americans. These articles explored written opinions that accompanied ...


Foreword: Legal Essays: A Checklist, Reagan Seidler, Sarah Macleod Jul 2020

Foreword: Legal Essays: A Checklist, Reagan Seidler, Sarah Macleod

Dalhousie Journal of Legal Studies

Good legal writing is more science than art. It persuades not by its rhetoric but by the impregnability of its research method. It answers its question using a testable, falsifiable, and repeatable method, so that others would choose to follow the same steps and come to the same conclusion.

At the Dalhousie Journal of Legal Studies (DJLS), we read scores of papers each year from law schools across the country. They show us that, nationwide, many authors misunderstand the purpose of a research paper. It is not a memo, nor is it an op-ed. The goal is to use a ...


Nothing Says "I Love You" Like A Correct Bluebook Citation & Formatting The 1l Brief, Jason Tubinis, Heather Simmons Feb 2020

Nothing Says "I Love You" Like A Correct Bluebook Citation & Formatting The 1l Brief, Jason Tubinis, Heather Simmons

Presentations

Law Librarians Heather Simmons and Jason Tubinis walked students through the necessary formatting for 1L brief success, as well as shared their top tips for Bluebook citations. Formatting topics included Table of Authorities, Table of Contents, page numbering, and styles. Students were encouraged to bring their laptops for hands on help with both Mac and PC versions of Microsoft Word.


Generalist Judges And Advocates' Jargon, Douglas E. Abrams Jan 2020

Generalist Judges And Advocates' Jargon, Douglas E. Abrams

Faculty Publications

Clerking is a privilege. Fresh out of law school and eager to begin their careers, law clerks at any level of the federal or state judiciary covet the opportunity to learn from a judge’s reservoir of knowledge. But law clerks who anticipate careers writing as advocates are also well-positioned to learn about something that a judge may not know when briefs or other adversary submissions land on the desk.

That “something” concerns jargon, this article’s focus because its use by advocates can impede the court’s understanding of a case’s facts and law. “Jargon” refers to “special ...


Fixed Stars: Famous First Amendment Phrases And Their Indelible Impact, David L. Hudson Jr., Jacob David Glenn Jan 2020

Fixed Stars: Famous First Amendment Phrases And Their Indelible Impact, David L. Hudson Jr., Jacob David Glenn

Law Faculty Scholarship

Some passages in First Amendment law have taken on a life and legend of their own, entering our cultural lexicon for their particular power, precision or passion. Some phrases are just so beautifully written that they cannot escape notice. Others aptly capture the essence of a key concept in a memorable way. Still others seemingly have grown in importance simply by the frequency for which they are cited in later court decisions. This article analyzes ten phrases from U.S. Supreme Court First Amendment decisions that qualify as some of the most enduring passages in First Amendment jurisprudence.


Legal Writing Manual, Jean Mangan, Chase Lyndale, Gabrielle Gravel Jan 2020

Legal Writing Manual, Jean Mangan, Chase Lyndale, Gabrielle Gravel

Books

This manual provides you with an overview of first-year legal writing topics and provides checkpoints during your writing process. On the other hand, this manual does not answer every question you have ever had on any legal writing concept and it is certainly not a spellbook that will make you instantly awesome at legal writing. Writing as a skill is a lifelong development process. Everyone can be an effective legal writer. Put in the time to study the concepts and then to practice using those concepts in your writing. Seek feedback on your writing and implement the feedback you receive ...


Getting It Right By Writing It Wrong: Embracing Faulty Reasoning As A Teaching Tool, Patricia G. Montana, Elyse Pepper Jan 2020

Getting It Right By Writing It Wrong: Embracing Faulty Reasoning As A Teaching Tool, Patricia G. Montana, Elyse Pepper

Faculty Publications

(Excerpt)

In the early days of legal writing, we use exercises that have clear "right" answers. The rules are very simple and their meaning, even without looking at the cases, is usually clear. So, the "right" answer is often obvious. Indeed, it is intuitive. Though these exercises give students a sense of accomplishment and allow them to track achievement and understand success and failure, in some ways, they reinforce a common problem in first-year law students: their inability to see beyond the surface of a legal rule.

To ensure the "right" answer, students must distill not only a general rule ...


Access To Law Or Access To Lawyers? Master's Programs In The Public Educational Mission Of Law Schools, Mark Burge Oct 2019

Access To Law Or Access To Lawyers? Master's Programs In The Public Educational Mission Of Law Schools, Mark Burge

Faculty Scholarship

The general decline in juris doctor (“J.D.”) law school applicants and enrollment over the last decade has coincided with the rise of a new breed of law degree. Whether known as a master of jurisprudence, juris master, master of legal studies, or other names, these graduate degrees all have a target audience in common: adult professionals who neither are nor seek to become practicing attorneys. Inside legal academia and among the practicing bar, these degrees have been accompanied by expressed concerns that they detract from the traditional core public mission of law schools—educating lawyers. This Article argues that ...


Still Writing At The Master’S Table: Decolonizing Rhetoric In Legal Writing For A “Woke” Legal Academy, Teri A. Mcmurtry-Chubb Oct 2019

Still Writing At The Master’S Table: Decolonizing Rhetoric In Legal Writing For A “Woke” Legal Academy, Teri A. Mcmurtry-Chubb

The Scholar: St. Mary's Law Review on Race and Social Justice

When the author wrote Writing At the Master’s Table: Reflections on Theft, Criminality, and Otherness in the Legal Writing Profession almost 10 years ago, her aim was to bring a Critical Race Theory/Feminism (CRTF) analysis to scholarship about the marginalization of White women law professors of legal writing. She focused on the convergence of race, gender, and status to highlight the distinct inequities women of color face in entering their ranks. The author's concern was that barriers to entry for women of color made it less likely that the existing legal writing professorate, predominantly White and female ...


References To Movies In Judicial Opinions And Written Advocacy, Part 1, Douglas E. Abrams Sep 2019

References To Movies In Judicial Opinions And Written Advocacy, Part 1, Douglas E. Abrams

Faculty Publications

In opinions in cases with no claims or defenses concerning movies or the movie industry, trial and appellate judges often help explain substantive or procedural points, or help embellish the discussion, with references to themes, scenes, or characters from well-known films that have held Americans’ attention. Sometimes the reference appears in an opinion of the court, and sometimes it appears in a concurring or dissenting opinion.


Ok, Google, Will Artificial Intelligence Replace Human Lawyering?, Amy Vorenberg, Julie A. Oseid, Melissa Love Koenig Sep 2019

Ok, Google, Will Artificial Intelligence Replace Human Lawyering?, Amy Vorenberg, Julie A. Oseid, Melissa Love Koenig

Law Faculty Scholarship

Will Artificial Intelligence (AI) replace human lawyering? The answer is no. Despite worries that AI is getting so sophisticated that it could take over the profession, there is little cause for concern. Indeed, the surge of AI in the legal field has crystalized the real essence of effective lawyering. The lawyer’s craft goes beyond what AI can do because we listen with empathy to clients’ stories, strategize to find that story that might not be obvious, thoughtfully use our imagination and judgment to decide which story will appeal to an audience, and creatively tell those winning stories.

This article ...


America's Founding Editors: Writing The Declaration Of Independence, Douglas E. Abrams May 2019

America's Founding Editors: Writing The Declaration Of Independence, Douglas E. Abrams

Faculty Publications

On Congress’ behalf, one of its members, 33-year-old Virginia lawyer Thomas Jefferson, drafted the Declaration of Independence. For the next half century, Jefferson’s fierce pride of authorship, unrestrained by humility, kept him from crediting Congress for skilled editing that helped make him a national icon by sharpening his powerful, but less than polished, draft. The irony of lawyer Jefferson’s enduring bitterness and ingratitude can stimulate today’s lawyers to sharpen their own drafts by respecting cooperative editors as valuable allies, not as troublesome adversaries.


Simple Legal Writing Can Improve Business Outcomes In Latin America, Leon C. Skornicki Apr 2019

Simple Legal Writing Can Improve Business Outcomes In Latin America, Leon C. Skornicki

University of Miami Inter-American Law Review

No abstract provided.


References To Television Shows In Judicial Opinions And Written Advocacy (Part Ii), Douglas E. Abrams Mar 2019

References To Television Shows In Judicial Opinions And Written Advocacy (Part Ii), Douglas E. Abrams

Faculty Publications

In the Journal’s January-February issue, Part I of this article began by surveying television’s profound influence on American culture since the early 1950s, a sturdy foundation for federal and state judges who cite or discuss well known television shows in their opinions. Part I presented television drama shows.

This Part II picks up where Part I left of. The discussion below presents television situation comedies (“sitcoms”) and reality TV shows that appear in judicial opinions. The discussion concludes by explaining why advocates should feel comfortable following the judges’ lead by carefully using television references to help make written ...


References To Television Shows In Judicial Opinions And Written Advocacy (Part I), Douglas E. Abrams Jan 2019

References To Television Shows In Judicial Opinions And Written Advocacy (Part I), Douglas E. Abrams

Faculty Publications

No abstract provided.


The Architecture Of Drama: How Lawyers Can Use Screenwriting Techniques To Tell More Compelling Stories, Teresa M. Bruce Jan 2019

The Architecture Of Drama: How Lawyers Can Use Screenwriting Techniques To Tell More Compelling Stories, Teresa M. Bruce

Articles

Hollywood writers have a secret. They know how to tell a compelling story—so compelling that the top-grossing motion pictures rake in millions, and sometimes billions, of dollars. How do they do it? They use a simple formula involving three acts that propel the story forward, three "plot points" that focus on the protagonist, and two "pinch points" that focus on the adversary. The attached Article argues that lawyers should build their stories in the same way Hollywood writers do. It deconstructs the storytelling formula used in movies and translates it into an IRAC-like acronym, SCOR. Attorneys who use SCOR ...


A 'Case' Study In Legal Writing Pedagogy: Connecting Doctrine And Skills To Authentic Client Voices, Becky L. Jacobs Jan 2019

A 'Case' Study In Legal Writing Pedagogy: Connecting Doctrine And Skills To Authentic Client Voices, Becky L. Jacobs

UTK Law Faculty Publications

Legal writing faculty have too little time to teach too many skills. To choices of deciding which skills to teach, how to teach those skills, and how much time to allocate to each skill." This brief essay will discuss one case, Epps v. Gober, that two instructors have found to be a veritable Swiss Army knife (nod to Tracy McGaugh), offering a range of versatile functions in the legal writing classroom.


Live And Learn: Live Critiquing And Student Learning, Patricia G. Montana Jan 2019

Live And Learn: Live Critiquing And Student Learning, Patricia G. Montana

Faculty Publications

(Excerpt)

After nearly fifteen years of teaching first-year and upper-level legal writing courses and commenting on thousands of student papers, I decided to experiment with a new way of giving feedback. In a break from the traditional written feedback I had become accustomed to in the form of margin comments and a combination of line edits and end notes, I opted to live a little and learn a new practice: live critiquing. Live critiquing is essentially the process of giving students feedback on their work “live” or in-person, rather than in writing. In the most liberal approach to live critiquing ...


The Unparalleled Benefits Of Teaching Parallelism, Rachel H. Smith Jan 2019

The Unparalleled Benefits Of Teaching Parallelism, Rachel H. Smith

Faculty Publications

(Excerpt)

As a student, I never learned how to use parallel structure, or “parallelism,” as a writing technique. I didn’t even know the official term until I started teaching legal writing. But even if I couldn’t name it, I always knew I liked it. As a high-school history student, I felt its force in speeches like Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address, William Jennings Bryan’s Cross of Gold, and Martin Luther King Jr.’s I Have a Dream. Parallelism always felt to me like the place where poetry meets prose—where even the most mundane writing can start ...


Finding Balance: Using Employment Law Problems To Achieve Multiple Learning Goals In Persuasive Legal Writing, Rosa Castello Jan 2019

Finding Balance: Using Employment Law Problems To Achieve Multiple Learning Goals In Persuasive Legal Writing, Rosa Castello

Faculty Publications

(Excerpt)

Legal Writing professors, like myself, face the same challenge each new semester: how can I effectively and efficiently help students learn one of the most important skills for a practicing lawyer? And one large hurdle in this quest to make our students good legal writers is creating a trial motion or appellate brief problem that helps them develop the particular skills required for persuasive legal writing. The act of creating the problem is sometimes like tightrope walking̶ finding just the right balance of facts and law to challenge students and help develop and enhance vital research, analytical, organizational, writing ...


On The Values Of Words, Michael J. Cedrone Jan 2019

On The Values Of Words, Michael J. Cedrone

Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works

Mary Norris' Between You and Me: Confessions of a Comma Queen and Kory Stamper's Word by Word: The Secret Life of Dictionaries use observations about language as a touchstone for a nuanced examination of deeper truths about language, culture, and law in a changing world. In so doing, they point to deeper truths about the use of language and its consequences. Law students, lawyers, and law professors will benefit from journeying with Norris and Stamper towards the goal of crafting prose that is clear, accurate, and inclusive. In particular, the legal community will benefit from the books' efforts to ...


Judicial Audiences: A Case Study Of Justice David Watt's Literary Judgments, Elaine Craig Dec 2018

Judicial Audiences: A Case Study Of Justice David Watt's Literary Judgments, Elaine Craig

Elaine Craig

Applicants to the federal judiciary identify three main audiences for their decisions: the involved and affected parties, the public, and the legal profession. This case study examines a set of decisions authored by Justice David Watt of the Ontario Court of Appeal, involving the rape, torture, murder or attempted murder of women, in which he attempts humour or uses puns, parody, stark imagery and highly stylized and colloquial language to introduce the violence, or factual circumstances surrounding the violence, in these cases. It assess these introductions in relation to the audiences judges have identified as important for their decisions. The ...


One Judge's "Ten Tips For Effective Brief Writing" (Part Ii), Douglas E. Abrams Nov 2018

One Judge's "Ten Tips For Effective Brief Writing" (Part Ii), Douglas E. Abrams

Faculty Publications

Chief United States Bankruptcy Judge Terrence L. Michael (N.D.OKLA.) has written "Ten Tips for Effective Brief Writing" and posted them on the court's website. In the Journal's September-October issue, part 1 of this article began by discussing Tip #9 ("leave the venom at home"). That part proceeded to discuss Tips 1-4.

This final part discusses the remaining Tips. All 10 thoughtful Tips warrant careful consideration from advocates who prepare submissions for trial courts or appellate courts.


Shot Selection, Patrick J. Barry Oct 2018

Shot Selection, Patrick J. Barry

The Journal of Appellate Practice and Process

No abstract provided.