October 13, 2015

The Power of Legal Narrative

Jeanne Kaiser, Western New England University School of Law, and Scott Kaiser Brown, University of Minnesota Law School, have published When the Story Is Too Good to Be True: A Lawyer's Role in Resisting the Lure of Narrative at 37 Western New England Law Review 233 (2015). Here is the abstract.
Storytelling is important in legal persuasion. The power of a good story is why an attorney strives to mold the facts of a case into a tale with clear heroes and villains. High profile bullying stories and the reaction to those stories by prosecutors, legislators, and the legal academy provide examples of lawyers’ susceptibility to the power of an emotional narrative. This article explores how social problems, like those relating to Phoebe Prince, Tyler Clementi, and Meagan Meiers, are likely to seem more real and pressing when presented in human terms as opposed to the abstract consequences.
Download the article from SSRN at the link.

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