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Scalia's Write-Hand Man

For all the buzz surrounding the 60 Minutes interview with Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, one might overlook the fact that this was not his only interview. For example, NPR's legal affairs reporter Nina Totenberg broadcast a three-part interview with Scalia this week. (Part one, part two, part three.) And in the May issue of the ABA Journal, reporter Richard Brust has his own sitdown with Scalia, who is joined in the interview by Bryan A. Garner, co-author of the reason for all these interviews, their new book, Making Your Case: The Art of Persuading Judges.

Garner made a cameo appearance in the 60 Minutes piece, but the ABA Journal interview gives him more of his due. Garner, after all, is the guru of legal writing, the man The New York Times once called, "the persnickety stylist for a linguistically challenged profession." The author of several books on legal writing, he runs LawProse, a company that trains lawyers to be better communicators, and is editor in chief of Black's Law Dictionary. His collaboration with Scalia grew out of his earlier project, in which he interviewed eight of the nine Supreme Court justices about legal writing and advocacy and posted the interviews online.

The ABA Journal interviewer talks to Scalia and Garner together and also provides an excerpt from the book and a podcast of the interview. When asked about the legal writers he most respects, Garner answers, "My own heroes there are Charles Alan Wright, author of Federal Practice and Procedure; I love the writing of Grant Gilmore, the great Yale law professor; and Lon Fuller, the Harvard philosopher of law."

Posted by Robert J. Ambrogi on April 29, 2008 at 12:21 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)


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