Popular culture worldwide has a long history of imagining stories around the judicial system, legal processes, and everyday practices of law. As a result, legal professionals frequently emerge as important protagonists in film, television, and literature. Yet for a long time, these characters, such as lawyers, judges, or law enforcement officers, were overwhelmingly male. This slowly changed near the end of the 20th century when a shift became apparent especially in law-related screen productions. Until now, however, scholarship on women lawyers and their representation in popular culture focuses almost exclusively on US-American and, to a lesser degree, British movies and television formats. This is despite various non-Western productions that feature women lawyers as the main character.
The interdisciplinary workshop ‘Images of Female Legal Professionals in Popular Culture: A Transnational Comparison’ aims to close this gap in the scholarly literature by particularly inviting contributions on law and popular culture in countries and regions not commonly recognized as creators of globally consumed media productions.
Topics to be explored include:
- Stereotypical versus realistic images of female legal professionals in popular culture
- Audiences/readership and their changing perceptions of women in the legal profession
- Women’s access to the legal profession and their representation in real life versus popular culture
- Changing portrayals of women in the legal profession and cross-cultural influences
- Plots, characters, and sociopolitical critique through female lead characters
The workshop is organized by AGYA members Lena-Maria Möller (Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law) and Shahd Alshammari (Gulf University for Science & Technology). Travel costs and accommodation for confirmed speakers will be covered by AGYA. Funding is still subject to approval.
Those interested in presenting papers are invited to send a tentative title, an abstract of around 300−500 words, and a short biography to Lena-Maria Möller (moeller(at)mpipriv.de) by 15 February 2022.
Please find the complete text of the call here: Call for Papers