Strickland Collection of Law and Popular Culture
The Strickland Collection of Law and Popular Culture was established through a generous donation of law-related movie posters, lobby cards, and other materials presented to the library by Professor Rennard Strickland. The collection includes more than 1,000 items ranging in date from 1913 through the 1980's. Some pieces from the collection are on permanent display in the Law Library.
Lobby cards are small movie posters, usually 11 x 14 inches. The cards and posters depict scenes portraying lawyers and law-related themes as they appeared in contemporaneous popular culture. They were created and distributed by the National Screen Service (which ceased in 1985) in order to promote public showings of movies. The posters and lobby cards of the Strickland Collection offer students and scholars an opportunity to view legal history in an enjoyable format while prompting and encouraging reflection on more serious issues. They are in themselves works of art.
Strickland is Senior Scholar in Residence at the University of Oklahoma College of Law. Strickland has an amazing personal history of achievement as a law professor, law school dean, prolific author, art collector, legal historian, and authority on Native American Law. He is Osage and Cherokee and a citizen of the Cherokee nation. He has long been involved in legal education in the classroom and through participation and leadership in the Association of American Law Schools and the Society of American Law Teachers. He received the SALT Outstanding Teaching and Contribution to Law Reform Award in 1978 and he received the Spirit of Excellence Award from the American Bar Association Commission on Minorities in the Profession in 1997.
His commitment to the improvement of legal education is demonstrated by this wonderful collection of movie lobby cards and posters which offer students the opportunity to view “the big picture.” He wrote in the Oklahoma City University Law Review:
“If we are to comprehend the public view of the legal profession in our society, American film must be seen as more than a pleasant or even challenging diversion. Ours is a visual culture, and the image of law and lawyers--indeed even the behavior of lawyers themselves--has been influenced significantly by the magic of the great stereopticon, by the larger-than-life figures on the silver screen” …
“In a democratic society like America, the filmmaker and the lawmaker have a natural affinity and a jealous distrust. Film and law seem to have been made for each other.”
- Cinematic Lawyer : The Magic Mirror and the Silver Screen, 22 Oklahoma City University Law Review (1997) 13-24, at page 14