James M. Dolliver, Law As A Profession, Will it Survive?, 26 Gonz. L. Rev. 267 (1990)

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In his novel, Miss Mackenzie, Anthony Trollope made this observation about lawyers: “Is it not remarkable that the common repute which we all give to attorneys in the general is exactly opposite to that which every man gives to his own attorney in particular? Whom does anybody trust so implicitly as he trusts his own attorney? And yet is it not the case that the body of attorneys is supposed to be the most roguish body in existence?” Parenthetically, it may be of interest that the name of Trollope’s lawyer is Mr. Slow.

This has not changed in 1991; nor was it a revelation in the time of Trollope as to the perceived views of the public on the legal profession. The writing on the subject is enormous and diffuse. The critique of judges, lawyers, and the legal profession, as well as discussions of that most popular of late Twentieth Century concepts, “accountability,” is a growth industry far beyond the gentle strictures of a Trollope. Hovering over the issue of “accountability,” however, is whether, given the current climate of opinion, the bar will be able to continue its position as a professional organization and lawyers will continue to be considered as members of a learned profession… Read More

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