chapter  9
What’s a lawyer doing in a nice place like this?
ByCHARLES SAMPFORD
Pages 16

Ethics currently enjoys a place in the academic lawyer’s landscape that was scarcely conceivable in the early 1980s.1 In this chapter, I shall consider how the role of ethics in teaching, research and practice has grown and some of the intellectual fallout from that growth – in law, jurisprudence, legal practice, applied philosophy in general, and legal ethics in particular. I will conclude by suggesting some of the implications and opportunities for ethicists. In drawing the brush so quickly over so many issues and arguing for such linkages, I am bound to offend many. In some areas, I have argued the positions taken in some detail (though not, I hope, to the satisfaction of my adversaries).2 In other areas, I am reaching beyond the detail of my argument to potential new arguments, the defence of which (if they be defensible) will await more sober reflection. My remarks are primarily based on my knowledge of the Australian legal academy and its interaction with the legal profession in that country. I cannot comment authoritatively on the experiences of British law academics – and I am aware that many take a far gloomier view of the potential support of, and contribution from, the English practicing profession than I. However, I would be wary of any suggestion that the forces at work are fundamentally different in our two countries.