“The law hath not been dead, though it hath slept.”
“If it doesn’t fit, thou
must acquit.” Those lines were penned by William Shakespeare, whose
plays took a great interest in the workings of the law and the dramas of
the court. (That last one might not be his. Who knows? We weren’t
the University of Oklahoma, students from the English and Constitutional
Studies departments have the opportunity to study the Bard’s works in
light of legal and ethical theory. The Shakespeare Moot Court class will
study five plays and then argue the cases, mock-court style. We wonder
if the class will gloss over that whole “let’s kill all the lawyers” bit
from Henry VI.
The Oklahoma Daily reports
that professors David Anderson and Andrew Porwancher modeled the class
on a graduate course originated at McGill University. The students will
be divided evenly between literature and law majors.
will be first in line at the mock-court performances, which will be
open to the public. Will the proceedings be like those on Law & Order, with a tough but beautiful female assistant D.A.? Or will they be more like those on Judge Judy, with
plaintiffs being scolded for entrusting their car to some guy who they
knew good and well was a dirtbag? Or will the judge crack wise, like
Harry on Night Court?
OK, so most of what we know about the law came from TV. Hey, not everyone is a Shakespeare scholar.