Document Type


Publication Title

Cardozo Law Review



Publication Date



Jewish lawyers, Jewish ethics, professional conduct, religious laywers, group identity


When we acknowledge the contradiction between the project's goal and the reality of group influence, we are led to consider the alternative strategy of creating community. Such a strategy would invite lawyers to begin a community dialogue regarding how each of our group identities, and the responses of others to our identities, interfere with our efforts to realize the goal of equal justice. While significant to the understanding of group dynamics, consideration of Jewish lawyering probably has limited value as a predictor of an individual lawyer's professional conduct. The actual and potential influence of Jewishness on lawyering is quite diverse, making it difficult to identify any particularly Jewish approach to lawyering. In addition, the absence of significant explicit conflict with professional norms, and the sharing of values with other groups, will also tend to make Jewish identity a less effective indicator of behavior. On the other hand, even if the influence of Jewish lawyering were largely limited to areas of discretion within professional ethics, the study of what it means to be a Jewish lawyer would have great significance for individuals like myself who are struggling to reconcile our identity as Jews and as lawyers.