• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Legal proceedings are a seminal example of a cultural performance. For this case study I observed Murder trial proceedings at the Supreme Court of New South Wales (Taylor Square) - September 2004

Extracts from this document...


THFI 1002 READING PERFORMANCE LAURA GOODMAN PEFORMANCE ANALYSIS FIELWORK EXERCISE z3100656 DUE THUSDAY 16th SEPTEMBER WEEK 8 Legal proceedings are a seminal example of a cultural performance. For this case study I observed Murder trial proceedings at the Supreme Court of New South Wales (Taylor Square) - September 2004 The performance of a legal proceeding; its content, manner, actors, audience and setting, all reflect certain cultural and societal traditions evident in the practice of age old English tribunals from which the Australian legal system has derived. Yet, from an analysis of these various element one can recognize how this practice reflects the influenced (or lack there of) of many other societal values, religion, gender roles and modernity, on society as a whole. The content of the courtroom performance is based on legal documentation and practice, its roots deeply embedded in precedent and values imbued by the "rule of law". The script of the performance, being the arguments presented by the adversarial bodies and the interaction of the Judge, are carefully comprised and supported by written legal documentation which remains on display for all to see. ...read more.


Technologies are only used, however only to a limited extent. Aside from microphones used by the speaking actor, a television used to screen witness statements and evidence and a video camera on hand- as well as the type writer machine used by the note-taker, technologies used are limited as to maintain a traditional and somber mood. Today, the courtrooms of the Supreme Courts of Australia contain dramatic features, impressing an audience with pomp and circumstance. Courtrooms observed for this study were located in the interior of the courthouse structure and therefore relied on artificial lighting, often subdued and dim. Spatial placement of people in courtroom events enables or restricts their ability to effectively participate in the events. Seating arrangements were oriented to face toward the judge and witness box. The jury, seated in its segregated (privileged) section, also faces the judge but, more importantly, is positioned closest to the open performance space where presentations are generally given. Jurors are given front row seats for the courtroom drama, signifying their saliency in the performance. Seating arrangements and spatial organization reveal hierarchical zones within the courtroom. The presiding judge or administrator is positioned at the highest point in the room, triangulated between the jury and the official adversarial performers. ...read more.


Then bow on entrance to the presiding judge. The end of the performance is preferably marked by a resolution or answer to the legal problem at hand- or the announcement that the "court is adjourned". Courtroom proceedings are of vital importance and significance in community culture. Whilst (usually) being open to the public scrutiny, they are a mean by which hierarchical social structures are put on display. As well as being the forum by with the upstanding, and reasonable judges attempt to serve justice to individuals within their community, within the scope of the "trial" performance all involved are reminded of the law's content, its morality, its dignity and its power. A trial popularizes the law by disseminating and demonstrating it to a lay audience, giving participants the opportunity and the cathartic satisfaction of approving the law by serving as the instruments of deliberation and decision. Furthermore, it democratizes the law by calling the community to witness, and by making it collectively responsible for the law's effectuation. And this is rightly so, for it is the collective community who is ultimately responsible for this performance. The tax payers of the general public, government officials, upstanding well educated professionals and the accused criminals of society come together to both participate and fund this cultural display. 1 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Law section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Law essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    "Within the present system of precedent in the English legal system, judges have very ...

    4 star(s)

    On the other hand, the doctrine of precedent is not followed as rigidly in the criminal division. This is due to the fact that individual liberty is at stake and judges are therefore given more discretion to prevent injustice such as in the case of R v Taylor [1950].

  2. Marked by a teacher

    abortion research

    4 star(s)

    Many non-persons, like animals, are protected. The state could theoretically assert an interest in protecting potential human life, even if it isn't a person. Does it Matter if the Fetus is a Person?: Whether the fetus is declared a person from a scientific, religious, or legal perspective, this would not necessarily mean that abortion is wrong.

  1. Marked by a teacher

    In order to decide whether or not trial by jury should or should not ...

    4 star(s)

    (Back to the twelfth century?) There have been problems with jury nobbling. That is pressurising one or more members of a jury by the use of threats into attempting to influence the outcome of the trial. This problem has been so serious, that in some cases special measures had to be taken to protect the jury from outside interference.

  2. Marked by a teacher

    Judicial precedent.

    3 star(s)

    ( Predictability - this relates to the certainty argument. With a large number of reported decisions, it should be easier to predict the outcome of a particular dispute and to enable legal advisors to give their clients precise and accurate advice.

  1. Analysis of Performance - Badminton.

    Either way the shuttle won't go far up the court leaving an open court to play the next shot. If you are playing court cover, the advantage is that you can put the opponent around the court as you can move easily up and down the court.

  2. Worlds Apart: Orientalism, Antifeminism, and Heresy in Chaucer's Man of Law's Tale

    previous heresies, a nefarious task to be "wholly completed by Antichrist, according to diabolical intention." William of Tyre phrases the relationship in familial terms: Muhammad is the "first- born of Satan." As Satan had seduced Eve, Muhammad "seduced" the Orient.

  1. Describe the system of trial by jury within the English legal system.

    Most people between the ages of 18 and 70 are eligible for jury service, if they have lived in the UK for at least 5 years since the age of 13, but of course, as in most cases, there are some people who are excused.

  2. Explain the need for discipline in at least two public services. Analyse the role ...

    Speaking to and reassuring the public, victims of crime, victims of road traffic accidents and giving advice on prison prevention 6. Patrol assigned beat, familiarise self with persons and property in the area to identify policy needs and maintain good relations with public 7.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work