Affect and Legal Education: Emotion in Learning and Teaching the Law, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Affect and Legal Education

Emotion in Learning and Teaching the Law, 1st Edition

Edited by Caroline Maughan, Paul Maharg


338 pages

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The place of emotion in legal education is rarely discussed or analysed, and we do not have to seek far for the reasons. The difficulty of interdisciplinary research, the technicisation of legal education itself, the view that affect is irrational and antithetical to core western ideals of rationality - all this has made the subject of emotion in legal education invisible. Yet the educational literature on emotion proves how essential it is to student learning and to the professional lives of teachers. This text, the first full-length book study of the subject, seeks to make emotion a central topic of research for legal educators, and restore the power of emotion in our teaching and learning. Part 1 focuses on the contribution that neuroscience can make to legal learning, a theme that is carried through other chapters in the book. Part 2 explores the role of emotion in the working lives of academics and clinical staff, while Part 3 analyses the ways in which emotion can be used in learning and teaching. The book, interdisciplinary and wide-ranging in its reference, breaks new ground in its analysis of the educational lifeworld of situations, communities, actors and interactions in legal education.


'By throwing light on the ways in which emotions play a significant role in both learning and teaching law, this international collection from some of the leading experts in legal education draws our attention to a much-neglected aspect of the educational process. It deserves to be widely read, seeking to enrich our understanding both of law students and law teachers by revealing just how crucial the affective domain is in relation to the rational thinking that we generally assume lies at the heart of legal education.' Fiona Cownie, Keele University, UK 'This pioneering text devotes long overdue attention to the role of the affective domain in legal education and compels action: at stake is the psychological and ethical wellbeing of our students, their educators and the practicing profession. To accommodate affect is not to oppose cognitive and lawyering excellence, but to enhance it. This volume will be essential reading for those committed to the moral-ethical development of a functioning and humane legal profession.' Sally Kift, Queensland University of Technology, Australia '… intellectually stimulating, wide-ranging, extremely well-written and long overdue… so multi-faceted and multi-layered that a second volume is doubtless warranted…' Hibernian Law Journal

Table of Contents

Contents: Introduction, Paul Maharg and Caroline Maughan; Part I Affect, Legal Education and Neuroscience: Why study emotion?, Caroline Maughan; Learning and the brain - an overview, Richard Roche; Enhancing self-control: insights from neuroscience, Lorraine Boran and David Delany. Part II Affect and Legal Education: Can litigators let go? The role of practitioner-supervisors in clinical legal education programmes, Sara Chandler; Instead of a career: work, art and love in university law schools, Anthony Bradney; What do academics think and feel about quality?, Chris Maguire. Part III Affect and Learning: From Socrates to Damasio, from Langdell to Kandel: the role of emotion in modern legal education, Alan M. Lerner; Legal understanding and the affective imagination, Maksymilian Del Mar; What students care about and why we should care, Graham Ferris and Rebecca Huxley-Binns; The body in (e)motion: thinking through embodiment in legal education, Julian Webb; Developing professional character - trust, values and learning, Karen Barton and Fiona Westwood; Addressing emotions in preparing ethical lawyers, Nigel Duncan; Space, absence, silence: the intimate dimensions of legal learning, Paul Maharg; Index.

About the Editors

Paul Maharg is Professor of Law at the Australian National University, and Professor of Law at Nottingham Law School. He has published extensively in the areas of legal education and legal critique. He has worked with regulators, law firms and law schools in England, Scotland, Canada, USA, Hong Kong and Australia. Caroline Maughan is a Principal Lecturer in Law and Director of Teaching and Learning at Bristol Law School, University of the West of England. She specializes in skills-based legal education. She currently teaches on the Bar Vocational Course and LLB year 3. She is a co-author of the OUP LPC manual 'Lawyers' Skills'. Her research interests are centred around legal education. She has published widely on skills-based, experiential and collaborative learning, and with Julian Webb co-edited Teaching Lawyers' Skills (1996) and co-wrote the student text Lawyering Skills and the Legal Process, (CUP Law in Context series, 2nd ed 2005). She has facilitated a number of workshops at conferences and staff development events across the UK.

About the Series

Emerging Legal Education

Emerging Legal Education

Emerging Legal Education is a forum for analysing the discourse of legal education and creating innovative ways of learning the law. The series focuses on research, theory and practice within legal education, drawing attention to historical, interdisciplinary and international characteristics, and is based upon imaginative and sophisticated educational thinking. The series takes a broad view of theory and practice. Series books are written for an international audience and are sensitive to the diversity of contexts in which law is taught, learned and practised.

Series Editors

Meera E. Deo is Associate Professor of Law at Thomas Jefferson School of Law in San Diego, California. She has held visiting positions at Berkeley Law and UCLA School of Law. She holds a Ph.D. in Sociology from UCLA and a J.D. from the University of Michigan Law School. Her nationally recognized, mixed-method empirical research is focused on institutional diversity, affirmative action, and solutions to intersectional (race/gender) bias.

Paul Maharg is Distinguished Professor of Practice - Legal Education at Osgoode Hall Law School, York University, Toronto. Prior to that he was Professor of Law in the Australian National University College of Law, Canberra, and is now an Honorary Professor there. He is a Fellow of the RSA (2009), was awarded a National Teaching Fellowship (2011), and is a Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (2015). He holds the positions of part-time Professor of Law at Nottingham Trent University Law School, and Visiting Professorships in the Faculties of Law at Hong Kong University and Chinese University of Hong Kong.


Elizabeth Mertz is John and Rylla Bosshard Professor at the University of Wisconsin Law School and Senior Research Faculty at the American Bar Foundation; in addition to her JD, she holds a PhD in Anthropology, and specializes in linguistic as well as legal anthropology. In recent years she has spent time as a Visiting Fellow in the Law and Public Affairs Program and a Visiting Professor in the Anthropology Department at Princeton University.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
LAW / Jurisprudence