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Theatre and Revolution in Clinical Legal Education

Newman, JoNel and Lawrie, Fergus and Nicolson, Donald and Swain, Melissa (2020) 'Theatre and Revolution in Clinical Legal Education.' Clinical Law Review, 26 (2). 465 - 513. ISSN 1079-1159

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Abstract

Why does a revolutionary theatre method developed in the 1960s and 1970s by Brazilian intellectual and activist Augusto Boal belong in clinical legal education? Use of the transformative Forum Theatre method can greatly enhance legal education. Boal, a colleague and disciple of Paulo Freire (Pedagogy of the Oppressed), developed Forum Theatre as a democratic, participatory, and collaborative production between the actors and the audience, to revolutionize traditional sit-and-watch theatre. Spectators in the audience become spect-actors, halt the oppressive element in a scenario, take the place of the actors, and eliminate oppression. The over-arching goal of Forum Theatre is to illuminate and achieve social justice. Because of the frequent use of role-playing methodologies in clinical legal education, and its client-centered approach to legal representation, law school clinics are an ideal laboratory to develop and explore Forum Theatre as an instructional exercise. Students learn to interrupt oppression, to observe and check their own paternalistic instincts, to empower vulnerable clients, and to transform the legal encounter into one that is more ethical and just. Three scripts the authors have developed and used in clinical training are included as an Appendix.

Item Type: Article
Divisions: Faculty of Humanities > Law, School of
Depositing User: Elements
Date Deposited: 06 Jul 2021 13:17
Last Modified: 06 Jul 2021 14:15
URI: http://repository.essex.ac.uk/id/eprint/24221

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