Raising the Bar: The Crucial Role of the Lawyer in Society

Raising the Bar: The Crucial Role of the Lawyer in Society

  • Talmage Boston
  • 1 volume; hardcover
  • 228 pages
  • © 2012
  • $55


How different might our country be, if not for the contributions of devoted lawyers? As Talmage Boston notes, twenty-six of the United States’ forty four presidents have been lawyers, among them the most celebrated of our country’s leaders—Abraham Lincoln. By following the examples of such consummate lawyers as Lincoln and others, lawyers today can “raise the bar” by reestablishing the legal profession’s once hallowed reputation.

Boston points to historical, modern, and even fictional legal role models that today’s lawyers can emulate. In addition to Lincoln, the stories of Leon Jaworski and James A. Baker, III—lawyers Boston recognizes as the greatest of the last fifty years—should serve as inspiration to today’s legal professionals. In the world of fiction, Atticus Finch—one of the most popular literary characters ever put on page and screen—remains an icon.

And popular lawyer-novelists such as John Grisham and Richard North Patterson bring legal matters to public attention and show us both the successes and failings of our legal system.

Written for lawyers and laypersons alike, Boston’s detailed accounts of these men provide a blueprint for what attorneys can and should do to raise the bar and remind the public of the legal profession’s crucial role in society.

CONTENTS

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Foreward by Dick Thornburgh
Introduction

Chapter 1: The Timeless Inspiration of Abraham Lincoln and Atticus Finch

Chapter 2: the Two Most Important Lawyers of the Last Fifty Years: Leon Jaworski and James A. Baker, III

Chapter 3: The Lawyer as Novelist: Opening the Public’s Mind to a New Perspective

Chapter 4: Theodore Roosevelt and the Law: How Leading a Hyperactive Life and Attacking Constitutional Jurisprudence Are Losing Propositions

Chapter 5: Achieving Dispute Resolution: The Lawyer’s End Game

Acknowledgements

Praise for Raising the Bar

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Talmage Boston has a unique understanding of the critical role that the rule of law has played in sustaining a stable democracy in the United States. Quite simply, our country would not be what it is today without it. Raising the Bar emphasizes that important aspect of our culture by recounting the stories of lawyers—both living and fictional—who have contributed in one way or another to a legal system that makes America the best country in the world.

James A. Baker, III
61st U.S. Secretary of State

Talmage Boston’s observations on the lives and careers of legal giants remind us anew of the centrality to the American Experience of the rule of law and those entrusted with its application. He reminds us that lawyers over time have played a crucial role in elevating the United States to the position it holds today as preeminent in the world order. Every American citizen needs to be reminded of that fact because if we lawyers don’t do it, no one else will.
Dick Thornburgh
76th U.S. Attorney General, from his Foreword

Talmage has done a magnificent job in eloquently singling out these towering heroes of the legal profession. The lawyers whose noble work fills the pages of this splendid book are timeless examples for all of us called to the law. We owe Talmage a deep note of thanks that the spirit of Lincoln and Finch-Abraham and Atticus-takes on even deeper meaning by showcasing the more contemporary examples of those who live greatly in the law.
Judge Ken Starr
President of Baylor University and Louise L. Morrison Professor of Constitutional Law

Raising the Bar provides a rich mosaic of the attributes that make a great lawyer. Boston inspires a renewed passion for integrity in the legal profession, extolling such remarkable lives as those of Abraham Lincoln and John Grisham. Boston’s lucid writing and unwavering stance against partisan judicial elections deserve utmost praise.
Wallace Jefferson
Texas Supreme Court Chief Justice

Talmage Boston’s new book is a timely reminder of the best of the legal profession-and a lively and interesting read.
Jeffrey Toobin
CNN Legal Analyst and author of The Nine

Astute, sophisticated, and wonderfully well-written, Raising the Bar explores with insight and heart the myriad of ways-sometimes subtle-in which lawyers and the law have defined our society. Beyond its fascinating depiction of how law shapes not only its practitioners but all of us-and vice versa-the book mounts a compelling argument that a career in the law is, and must be, an honorable adventure. No one captures the real-world pulse of our profession better than Talmage Boston.
Richard North Patterson
Best-selling novelist and former lawyer

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