Why Good Lawyers Matter

Overview

Lawyers occupy a unique place in society. They are loved by some, distrusted or hated by others. More often than not, our perception of lawyers is shaped by the way the profession is portrayed in popular literature, on television, and in film. Many people think that lawyers only serve to help the wealthy, while others view them either as protectors of the innocent or as amoral defenders of the guilty. But do we really know the many roles that lawyers may play, the aims and goals of the profession, and whether lawyers meet those goals?

Why Good Lawyers Matter endeavours to provide an accessible look at lawyers in modern society. With contributions by leading commentators, this informative, thought-provoking collection contends with the questions of what is a lawyer, and what role lawyers do — and should — play in society.

Reviews

"From the beautifully written foreword by George Elliot Clarke, a Canadian poet and playwright, to the final essay addressing “the fundamental ideals of the legal profession” authored by leading Canadian jurist, Justice Stephen T. Goudge, it is clear that this is no ordinary book on legal ethics. One of the major strengths of Why Good Lawyers Matter lies in its success in bringing together a wide range of perspectives on the legal profession. The book features an impressive list of Canadian legal ethics scholars as well as a number of practicing lawyers, judges, and a journalist."

Amy Salyzyn, Jotwell

Table of Contents

Foreword: The Lawyer: A Material Witness
George Elliott Clarke

Preface
The Honourable Thomas A. Cromwell

Part I: What is a Lawyer?

“Better . . . or Worse?” The Satisfactions and Frustrations of the Lawyer‑Client Relationship
Daphne Dumont

Was Lincoln Right?
Augustus Richardson

Lawyer or Liar? Breaking Down Public Perception
Stephen G.A. Pitel

Lawyers, Guns, and Money: Lawyers and Power in Canadian Society
Adam M. Dodek

Part II: What Role do Lawyers Play?

Why We Love to Hate Lawyers
Dean Jobb

The Better Part of Average
Patrick Healy

Why Do We Regulate Lawyers?
Alice Woolley

Lawyers, Snails, and Bottles: The Creeping Pace of Change in the Law
Melina Buckley

Part III: What Role Should Lawyers Play?

More and More Lawyers; Less and Less Justice
Roy McMurtry

The Great Canadian Lawyer: A Manifesto, Eh
Jocelyn Downie & Richard Devlin

Post-9/11 Lawyers
Trevor C.W. Farrow

Guiding Lawyers To Be the Best They Can Be: The Fundamental Ideals of the Legal Profession
Stephen T. Goudge

“Ultimately, the basic ideal of the law must be that every person or cause merits an advocate who must advance well-informed, well-crafted, truthful, and persuasive arguments in aid of the client. That’s why good lawyers matter.”

— From the Foreword by George Elliott Clarke, OC, ONS, PhD, LLD (Hon) E.J. Pratt Professor of Canadian Literature, University of Toronto

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