North Square, New Street Law and Outlaws: Class and Race in Recent Northern Legal Television Drama
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Legal drama series have been a mainstay of British television for many years, their format often allowing for the exploration of a range of social, cultural and political issues. In many instances the legal settings of these series allow writers to investigate moments when those who are socially marginalised interact with one of British society’s major institutions. At the heart of these interactions is a representation of class and more recently race. Through a genre-based (the legal drama) analysis of the Leeds-set North Square (2000) and the Manchester-based New Street Law (2006–2007), this chapter considers how representations of class operate through the regional and workplace settings of these legal dramas. It concludes by discussing Outlaws (2004), a series set in a small northern town and which, rarely for British television, had a black legal professional at its centre, providing the opportunity to explore social issues around race and class.
KeywordsCentral Character Legal Professional Television Drama Black Defendant Black Character
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