Social justice tropes in law and literature: rights narratives, legal fictions, and (un)writable wrongs?

Alice Diver*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalEditorialpeer-review


This Special Issue on Law and Literature aims to present a wide range of perspectives on how the notion of ‘lex ferenda’ (‘the law as it should be’) is represented within differing works of literature. The complex overlaps between law and works of literary fiction have been analysed and evaluated, particularly in terms of social justice issues and human rights violations (Schramm, 2000; Frank, 2010; Simonsen, 2013; Ward, 2012, 2015). This diverse collection of essays looks however to science fiction, comic books, poetry, and plays to examine and critique issues of injustice: racism, anti-Semitism, social exclusion and othering, abuse of legal process, and barriers to justice. The areas of law analysed include Equity and Trusts, EU law, Intellectual Property Law, Equality Law, and Human Rights, which at first glance suggest an eclectic mix. The articles share a commonality of purpose however: through close readings of the works in question they identify, argue, and analyse the timeless failings of law, policy, legal process, and practice that can easily and repeatedly lead to instances of profound injustice.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)341-343
Number of pages3
JournalLiverpool Law Review
Issue number3
Early online date09 Sep 2023
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2023


  • social justice
  • rights
  • legal fictions

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Law


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