Exploring Imaginative Legal History: The Legalism of the House Stark in the Game of
Media & Arts Law Review Volume 20 (2015) 181-197.
17 Pages Posted: 31 Aug 2015
Date Written: January 31, 2015
This article examines George R R Martin’s imaginative historical narrative in his book series A Song of Ice and Fire. The first book of the series (A Game of Thrones) is highlighted and discussed from the points of view of legal history and applied legal theory. The article concentrates on the legal mentality of one of the noble Houses in A Game of Thrones and discusses Martin’s rich narrative in its relation to the real feudal legal history and jurisprudential frameworks it displays. Analysis focuses on the rules of succession. It will be argued that even though the House Stark’s attitude and mentality can be labelled as legalistic and surprisingly modern it can be seen as a natural part of the imaginative feudal world of A Game of Thrones. The article concludes that, by studying the legalistic attitude and mentality of the House Stark, we can also learn about the legal theoretical nature of modern legalism. Paradoxically, it is also suggested that the study of imaginative legal history deepens our understanding of ‘real’ legal history. Moreover, the author argues that analysis of imaginative legal history expands our legal mind and immerses us in alternative horizons of law.
Keywords: game of thrones, legalism, legal history, law and litterature, applied legal theory
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