"No Sacrifice is too great for the Cause!" Cause(less) Lawyering and the Legal Trials and Tribulations of Gone with the Wind
"No sacrifice is too great for the Cause!"-so says Gone With the Wind's fulcrum of moral authority, Dr. Meade, about that quintessential "status" cause, the Confederacy and its "peculiar" laws: the right to secede and to own another. Now one can very well query how "legal"-let alone "just"-- the Cause of the Old South was: a slave society predicated upon repression rather than recht. No wonder that very few lawyers pop up in GWTW, rallying to its Cause. Ironic then is GWTW''s current status as one of the most legally regulated, even policed of texts, the lawyers for the Mitchell estate exercising a kind of "hanging judge" or "lynch mob" ruthlessness against what is this paper's focus: their legal campaign against Alice Randall's recent parody, The Wind Done Gone--a renarration of GWTW from the point of view of the African-Americans in Mitchell's novel. I want to examine this court proceeding, and, indeed, the (legal) trials and tribulations of GWTW writ large, on celluloid and the printed page, in reverential sequel (Alexandra Ripley's Scarlett) and satirical send-up (Randall's TWDG) from the point-of-view of the Mitchell estate's solicitors as causeless "cause lawyers" (fighting for truth and justice?), setting their actions against the backdrop of America's on-going "War between the States" (over, eg, public display of the emblems of the Confederacy). For it is the contention of this paper that the causeless "cause lawyers" protecting Margaret Mitchell's myth of Dixie have done precisely what even a skilled parodist like Randall could not carry off: they've killed the very emblem of their "Cause", none other than Scarlett O'Hara herself.
The Cultural Lives of Cause Lawyers
Legal Theory, Jurisprudence and Legal Interpretation