The Big Lebowski -- The Dude's Lessons in Law and Leadership for Military and National Security Attorneys

12 Pages Posted: 6 May 2016 Last revised: 14 Dec 2016

See all articles by Ryan Little

Ryan Little

United States Military Academy, West Point

Date Written: May 5, 2016

Abstract

The Big Lebowski is a cultural phenomenon that has prompted academic research into the nature of cult cinema, provided fodder for a host of law review quotes, and motivated a tradition of fan festivals and midnight screenings. However, most viewers do not realize that The Big Lebowski also serves as an engaging training tool for military and national security attorneys.

Disguised as an impish play on film noir and hard-boiled detective fiction, The Big Lebowski’s unpretentious treatment of delicate topics contains poignant lessons for military and national security attorneys that include: (1) the risks facing national security attorneys when they lose focus on their professional and moral responsibilities, (2) military attorneys should expect to encounter mental health concerns and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in unexpected ways; (3) the importance of values and how they impact the success of a national security legal office, and (4) the role of the attorney in military operations. Military and national security attorneys who adopt the lessons of The Big Lebowski will be better lawyers and leaders.

Keywords: national security law, military law, PTSD, post-traumatic stress disorder, professional responsibility, judge advocate, cognitive bias

Suggested Citation

Little, Ryan, The Big Lebowski -- The Dude's Lessons in Law and Leadership for Military and National Security Attorneys (May 5, 2016). Pace Law Review, Forthcoming. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2776243

Ryan Little (Contact Author)

United States Military Academy, West Point ( email )

600 Thayer Rd
West Point, NY 10996
United States

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