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RC CHALLANGE: the law and litreature movements

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Joined: 03 Jul 2018
Posts: 38
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GMAT 1: 560 Q47 V28
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RC CHALLANGE: the law and litreature movements  [#permalink]

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New post 02 Nov 2018, 23:17
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The law-and-literature movement claims to have introduced a valuable pedagogical innovation into legal study: instructing students in techniques of literary analysis for the purpose of interpreting laws and in the reciprocal use of legal analysis for the purpose of interpreting literary texts. The results, according to advocates, are not only conceptual breakthroughs in both law and literature but also more sensitive and humane lawyers. Whatever the truth of this last claim, there can be no doubt that the movement is a success: law-and-literature is an accepted subject in law journals and in leading law schools. Indeed, one indication of the movement’s strength is the fact that its most distinguished critic, Richard A. Posner, paradoxically ends up expressing qualified support for the movement in a recent study in which he systematically refutes the writings of its leading legal scholars and cooperating literary critics.

Critiquing the movement’s assumption that lawyers can offer special insights into literature that deals with legal matters, Posner points out that writers of literature use the law loosely to convey a particular idea or as a metaphor for the workings of the society envisioned in their fiction. Legal questions per se, about which a lawyer might instruct readers, are seldom at issue in literature. This is why practitioners of law-and-literature end up discussing the law itself far less than one might suppose. Movement leader James White, for example, in his discussion of arguments in the Iliad, barely touches on law, and then so generally as to render himself vulnerable to Posner’s devastating remark that “any argument can be analogized to a legal dispute.”

Similarly, the notion that literary criticism can be helpful in interpreting law is problematic. Posner argues that literary criticism in general aims at exploring richness and variety of meaning in texts, whereas legal interpretation aims at discovering a single meaning. A literary approach can thus only confuse the task of interpreting the law, especially if one adopts current fashions like deconstruction, which holds that all texts are inherently uninterpretable.
Nevertheless, Posner writes that law-and-literature is a field with “promise”. Why? Perhaps, recognizing the success of a movement that, in the past, has singled him out for abuse, he is attempting to appease his detractors, paying obeisance to the movements institutional success by declaring that it “deserves a place in legal research” while leaving it to others to draw the conclusion from his cogent analysis that it is an entirely factitious undertaking, deserving of no intellectual respect whatsoever. As a result, his work stands both as a rebuttal of law-and-literature and as a tribute to the power it has come to exercise in academic circles.

1. The primary purpose of the passage is to
(A) assess the law-and-literature movement by examining the position of one of its most prominent critics
(B) assert that a mutually beneficial relationship exists between the study of law and the study of literature
(C) provide examples of the law-and-literature movement in practice by discussing the work of its proponents
(D) dismiss a prominent critics recent study of the law-and-literature movement
(E) describe the role played by literary scholars in providing a broader context for legal issues

2. Posner’s stated position with regard to the law-and-literature movement is most analogous to which one of the following?
(A) a musician who is trained in the classics but frequently plays modern music while performing on stage
(B) a partisan who transfers allegiance to a new political party that demonstrates more promise but has fewer documented accomplishments
(C) a sports fan who wholeheartedly supports the team most likely to win rather than his or her personal favorite
(D) an ideologue who remains committed to his or her own view of a subject in spite of compelling evidence to the contrary
(E) a salesperson who describes the faults in a fashionable product while conceding that it may have some value

3. The passage suggests that Posner regards legal practitioners as using an approach to interpreting law that
(A) eschews discovery of multiple meanings
(B) employs techniques like deconstruction
(C) interprets laws in light of varying community standards
(D) is informed by the positions of literary critics
(E) de-emphasizes the social relevance of the legal tradition

4. The Passage suggests that Posner might find legal training useful in the interpretation of a literary text in which
(A) a legal dispute symbolizes the relationship between two characters
(B) an oppressive law is used to symbolize an oppressive culture
(C) one of the key issues involves the answer to a legal question
(D) a legal controversy is used to represent a moral conflict
(E) the working of the legal system suggests something about the political character of a society

5. The author uses the word “success” in line 11 to refer to the law-and-literature movement’s
(A) positive effect on the sensitivity of lawyers
(B) widespread acceptance by law schools and law journals
(C) ability to offer fresh insights into literary texts
(D) ability to encourage innovative approaches in two disciplines
(E) response to recent criticism in law journals

6. According to the passage, Posner argues that legal analysis is not generally useful in interpreting literature because
(A) use of the law in literature is generally of a quite different nature than use of the law in legal practice
(B) law is rarely used to convey important ideas in literature
(C) lawyers do not have enough literary training to analyze literature competently
(D) legal interpretations of literature tend to focus on legal issues to the exclusion of other important elements
(E) legal interpretations are only relevant to contemporary literature

7. According to Posner, the primary difficulty in using literary criticism to interpret law is that
(A) the goals of the two disciplines are incompatible
(B) there are few advocates for the law-and-literature movement in the literary profession
(C) the task of interpreting law is too complex for the techniques of literary criticism
(D) the interpretation of law relies heavily on legal precedent
(E) legal scholars are reluctant to adopt the practice in the classroom
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Re: RC CHALLANGE: the law and litreature movements  [#permalink]

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New post 03 Nov 2018, 05:45
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Hello shard87 ........ This is regarding the following post made by you :https://gmatclub.com/forum/rc-challange-the-law-and-litreature-movements-280631.html

Please follow the rules specified in the following topic while creating a new post in RC forum : https://gmatclub.com/forum/rc-forum-rules-must-read-155874.html

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Re: RC CHALLANGE: the law and litreature movements &nbs [#permalink] 03 Nov 2018, 05:45
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