Atlantean Prose and the Search for Democracy
The Crit: A Critical Legal Studies Journal, Vol. 2, 2009
23 Pages Posted: 3 Dec 2008 Last revised: 2 Mar 2009
Date Written: December 3, 2008
Atlantis, the Lost City, has been a focal point of folklore, archeological inquiry, literary criticism, and mystic interpretation. It has boggled the brilliant, confused scientists, and sparked the interest of children. "Skeptics, archaeologists, geologists, and anthropologists may rant and rave, but the myth of Atlantis endures. In every generation, someone emerges to champion the cause and to embroider the story." But the significance of Atlantean prose as an avenue through which to best understand critical legal thought has not been explored in depth. To be sure, there have been numerous books, articles, and opinions analyzing Atlantis, but little attention has been given to the legal significance of this type of storytelling. What does it mean to engage myth? How can legal scholars and practitioners learn from and use lessons of antiquity? Where does modern narrative theory fit into traditional legal discourse? I ask the reader to dive into the depths with me and consider what Atlantis can teach us about democracy, critical legal studies, and the rule of law.
Keywords: Atlantis, Democracy, Democratic Theory, Narrative, Myth, Utopia
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