Interrogating absence: the lawyer in science fiction
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This article argues that whilst concepts of law and justice can be seen as prominent in much science fiction, the role of lawyer is mostly absent. This article interrogates these absences and asks whether they can be traced back to contemporary concerns around professional ethics. Three potential absences are noted; firstly, justice is considered as immanent. In these fictional futures lawyers have become unnecessary due to the immediacy of the legal system. The second conceptualisation portrays lawyers as intertwined with corporate interests. In these speculative moments lawyers have become culturally indistinguishable from other types of corporate entities. The final science fictive texts highlight a desire for the lawyer-hero. In these texts justice is overwhelmingly absent and shows a continuing need for legal professionals. Each of these cultural moments presents important questions for current understandings of professional ethics and the regulatory systems in which they are based. A removal of lawyers from our shared understandings of the future is indicative of potential problems with perceptions of professional ethics in the present.
International Journal of the Legal Profession
© 2014 Taylor & Francis (Routledge). This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in International Journal of the Legal Profession on 21 Aug 2014, available online: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/09695958.2014.946932
Law not elsewhere classified