Not currently available in 2020

Unit description

Investigates ways in which images of law in popular culture depict, distort and critique the legal process, the role of lawyers, even jurisprudence itself. Organised around the theme of 'speculative legalism', this unit reads select science fiction, fantasy and horror texts as juridical, each (re)writing the law with imaginative representations.  For example, vampires and zombies as legal persons, Panem and Westeros as law-ful(l) places and the Tolkien's Ring of Power and Pullman's alethiometer as nomological things.  

Unit content

Topic 1: Legal Persons

(a) Lex Vampirica: The Law of the Undead in True Blood, the ‘Twilight’ series, and The Passage;

(b) The Litigating Dead: Zombie Jurisprudence in The Walking Dead, The Rising and World War Z

Topic 2: Law-ful(l) Places:

(a) Fantastic and Science Fiction Dystopias in Law and Literature: The Rite of Rights in The Hunger Games;

(bMachiavellian Fantasy and the Game of Laws: Lex, Rex and Sex in George R.R. Martin's Game of Thrones

Topic 3: Nomological Things:

(a) Eee-vil is stirring in Morrrdorrr!’: Sauron, the Ring and the New Grundnorm; or Middle-earth-as-Empire;

(b) His Dark Legalities: Intellectual Property, the Creative Commons and the War in Heaven-as-a-Metaphor in Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials Trilogy


Learning outcomes

Unit Learning Outcomes express learning achievement in terms of what a student should know, understand and be able to do on completion of a unit. These outcomes are aligned with the graduate attributes. The unit learning outcomes and graduate attributes are also the basis of evaluating prior learning.

Learning outcomes and graduate attributes

Teaching and assessment


Intensive offerings may or may not be scheduled in every session. Please refer to the timetable for further details.

Southern Cross University employs different teaching methods within units to provide students with the flexibility to choose the mode of learning that best suits them. SCU academics strive to use the latest approaches and, as a result, the learning modes and materials may change. The most current information regarding a unit will be provided to enrolled students at the beginning of the study session.

Fee information


Commonwealth Supported courses
For information regarding Student Contribution Amounts please visit the Student Contribution Amounts.
Commencing 2020 Commonwealth Supported only. Student contribution band: 3

Fee paying courses
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