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Corporate Law Practice as a Public Calling, 49 Maryland Law Review 255 (1990)


Law is a service profession; but it is also a public profession. Lawyers are supposed to serve their clients faithfully and zealously; but they also are supposed to work, both on and off the job of representing clients, as counselors, citizens, reformers, community activists, and public servants, to maintain the integrity of the framework of laws, institutions, and procedures that constrain their clients' practices and their own-and not just to maintain that framework, but to help transform it so that it more nearly will approach the conditions ofjustice and civic community. The lawyer is to function, in Talcott Parsons' words, "as a kind of buffer between the illegitimate desires of his client and the social interest." He represents the client before the legal system; but he also represents the legal system to the client.

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