Course Code: 3XBO10B20
Start Date: 06/01/2021Day of the Week:
Length in weeks: 10
Charles Dickens (1812-70) was a writer who was concerned with the exposure of social injustice. In Bleak House (1852-53) he presented the procedural dysfunction and injustice of the Court of Chancery in the case of Jarndyce and Jarndyce, about a disputed will which grinds hopelessly on at the heart of the novel. Dickens observed that ‘the one great principal of English law is to make business for itself’. His contemporary Anthony Trollope (1815-82) also wrote a great novel about a contested will in Orley Farm (1862), which George Orwell described as ‘one of the most brilliant descriptions of a lawsuit in English fiction.’ In this course we will examine these novels in relation to their presentation of the workings of the legal system before reforms were made leading to the Judicature Acts of 1873 and 1875.