Shameless Self-Promotion Dept.: My Upcoming Smithsonian Program on Cross-Examination

I don’t know how many Ethics Alarms readers live in the vicinity of Washington, D.C.—I suspect quite a few—but if you do and are interested in seeing me and my sister present a lively two-hour program exploring many of the legal ethics issues that I have tackled here, along with plenty of history, popular culture and trial technique (and are willing to pay $45 for the privilege as well as some take-home materials),  maybe I can meet you on the evening of October 21st.

The event is called “Courtroom Drama: The Art of Cross-Examination,” and here’s description:

Ever since Portia challenged Shylock in the Merchant of Venice, no aspect of the law has seemed more fascinating and dramatic to non-lawyers than cross-examination, in which a skilled advocate attempts to use guile, traps, and incisive questions to undermine an opposing witness’s credibility.

Edith Marshall, a former Justice Department litigator, and Jack Marshall, a lawyer and ethicist who has produced and directed many legal dramas with climactic cross- examinations, use court transcripts, plays, and films to demonstrate and dissect epic battles of wits in actual practice and in popular culture.

Using famous cross-examinations by lawyers from Sir Thomas More to Perry Mason, Abraham Lincoln to Atticus Finch, and drawing on cases from My Cousin Vinny to the Scopes Trial, they delve into a number of questions: What are the real rules and techniques governing cross-examination? What is its purpose and limitations? What do TV and the movies get wrong—or right—in their portrayals?

Along the way, they also highlight how some elements of cross-examination can be used outside the courtroom. This legal investigation promises to be both entertaining and thought-provoking for lawyers, non-lawyers, and potential witnesses alike.

4 thoughts on “Shameless Self-Promotion Dept.: My Upcoming Smithsonian Program on Cross-Examination

  1. Is any of this drawn from the book, The Art of Cross-Examination (I believe that was the title)? Received it as CLE materials a few years back.

    -Jut

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