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Visual Legal Advocacy (Austin)
Fall 2019   LAW 979-001  

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Meeting Times/Location
W 4:30PM - 6:30PM
Golkin Hall 238

Faculty
Regina Austin

William A. Schnader Professor of Law

raustin@law.upenn.edu
Additional Information
Experiential Course

Yes

Skills Training
Team Projects
Other Professional Skills: Interviewing Multimodal Scriptwriting (Including elements of speech, text, sound, music, visual still and moving images) Multimodal Legal Advocacy and Persuasion

Grading
100% Other (Joint editing script and compilation or rough cut of work of visual legal advocacy)

Satisfies Senior Writing Requirement

No

Course Continuity
Students are encouraged to stay home if you are ill or experience flu-like symptoms. If you miss a class for any reason, it is still your responsibility to make up the work missed.

I offer the following to students who miss class due to illness:

- I will make PowerPoint slides or other class materials routinely available on the course site to everyone in the class.

Category
Seminar

Credits
2.0

The Visual Legal Advocacy Seminar will introduce students to the art of making short nonfiction law-based social justice advocacy films on behalf of actual individual clients, public interest organizations and grassroots groups. Videos made by previous seminar participants are available for viewing on the website of the Penn Program on Documentaries & the Law and on the Law School’s YouTube channel. Participants will be divided into several working groups or crews to develop topics that will be suggested by the instructor or proposed by the seminar participants themselves. Formal in-class Instruction will track the steps in the production of a nonfiction or documentary film, starting with pre-production planning (including multimodal research, copyright restrictions on sources, storytelling for advocacy and the writing of treatments and shooting scripts), continuing on to the rudiments of production (including creation of stock still photo gallery on Flickr and hands-on introductions to the camera, lighting and sound equipment available in the VLA Media Lab), and concluding with an introduction to post-production (including a hands-on introduction to editing and distribution). The ethical obligations of visual legal advocates will be emphasized throughout. Students choosing to leave the seminar at the end of the first semester will be expected to submit a short written paper on some aspect of visual legal advocacy. Students continuing into the second semester will be responsible for producing a short work of visual legal advocacy with the assistance of a lecturer who is a professional cinematographer who will facilitate the production of the videos. Formal, in-class sessions will not be held as students will be scheduling and shooting interviews, obtaining and reading transcripts, and producing compilation and rough cuts of their videos. The crews will meet separately with the seminar professor on a weekly or bi-weekly basis at times that are mutually agreed upon. At the end of the semester, the instructor and the facilitator will undertake to complete the video for distribution.

Course Concentrations

Criminal Law and Procedure
Learning outcomes: Demonstrate a core understanding of criminal law and procedure; Perform legal analysis in the context of criminal law and procedure; Communicate effectively on topics related to criminal law and procedure; Demonstrate an understanding of the role criminal law and procedure play in society and their impact on other areas of law and society.

Intellectual Property and Technology Law
Learning outcomes: Demonstrate a core understanding of intellectual property law; Perform legal analysis in the context of intellectual property law; Communicate effectively on topics related to intellectual property; Demonstrate an understanding of the interconnection between technology and intellectual property, and how they affect other areas of law and society.

Employment Law and Employee Benefits
Learning outcomes: Demonstrate a core understanding of employment law and employee benefits; Perform legal analysis in the context of employment law and employee benefits; Communicate effectively on topics related to employment law and employee benefits; Demonstrate an understanding of how employment law and employee benefits affect other areas of law.

Perspectives on the Law
Learning outcomes: Demonstrate an understanding of how the law affects, and is affected by, the individual course topic; Perform legal analysis in the context of the individual course topic; Communicate effectively on the legal and other aspects of the individual course topic; Demonstrate the ability to use other disciplines to analyze legal issues relevant to the individual course topic, including economics, philosophy, and sociology, as appropriate.

Professional Responsibility and Ethics
Learning outcomes: Demonstrate an understanding of how the law affects, and is affected by, the individual course topic; Perform legal analysis in the context of the individual course topic; Communicate effectively on the legal and other aspects of the individual course topic; Demonstrate the ability to use other disciplines to analyze legal issues relevant to the individual course topic, including economics, philosophy, and sociology, as appropriate.

Public Interest
Learning outcomes: Demonstrate a core understanding of the varied legal aspects of public interest law; Perform legal analysis in the context of public interest law; Communicate effectively on topics related to public interest law; Demonstrate an understanding of how public interest law is connected to and affected by a wide variety of legal and regulatory structures and doctrines.

Equity and Inclusion
Learning outcomes: Demonstrate a core understanding of the varied legal aspects of equity and inclusion; Perform legal analysis in the context of topics related to equity and inclusion; Communicate effectively on the legal aspects of equity and inclusion; Demonstrate an understanding of how equity and inclusion are connected to and affected by a wide variety of legal and regulatory structures and doctrines.


Textbooks

"Documentary Filmmaking: A Contemporary Field Guide" by John Hewitt and Gustavo Vazquez
Edition: 2nd 2013
Publisher: Oxford
ISBN: 9780199300860
Required