Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
New Directions in Law and Literature$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Elizabeth S. Anker and Bernadette Meyler

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780190456368

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: June 2017

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190456368.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2020. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 24 November 2020

Law as Performance

Law as Performance

Historical Interpretation, Objects, Lexicons, and Other Methodological Problems

(p.193) Chapter 11 Law as Performance
New Directions in Law and Literature

Julie Stone Peters

Oxford University Press

This chapter starts from the view that legal performance matters to law: its outcomes, doctrines, and history. Here, rather than defending that view (a task undertaken elsewhere), it analyzes the methodological issues that arise from it. Distinguishing performances—expressive, embodied legal events, and practices—from both literary and legal texts (the traditional objects of law and literature), it assesses the vexed words “performance” and “performativity” as analytic tools, set against the rich historical lexicon. It then distinguishes “law in performance” and “law of performance” from “law as performance,” arguing that analysis of more familiar interpretive objects (aesthetic performances, legal texts) cannot substitute for sustained attention to legal events and practices. Finally, it briefly outlines some paradigms for understanding legal performance: legal conjuration, enactment, or mimesis; legal surrogation (metaphoric, metonymic, or indexical); and legal theatricality-antitheatricality.

Keywords:   law, performance, theatricality, performativity, history, literature, methodology

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .