March 01, 2015

Global Litigator: Challenges of the Adversary System as a New Idea

A mock trial in Uzbekistan offers new perspective on the U.S. justice system.

Dan Small

As litigators brought up in the U.S. adversarial system, it’s hard for us to imagine these scenarios:

  • prosecutors reluctant to participate in a mock trial—because they might not win and have never faced adversarial opposition before;
  • a defense lawyer with tears of joy over the idea of being able to cross-examine a prosecution witness for the first time—because just maybe that idea, once planted, will grow in the system she works in;
  • a judge shocked to hear that a defendant could come into his courtroom and refuse to answer his questions—because of some strange ideas regarding self-incrimination.

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