Miranda: More Than Words | Wilson Center
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Miranda: More Than Words

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Webcast Recap

Since 2001, the American Bar Association Division for Public Education has conducted the Leon Jaworski public program series to commemorate Law Day. The Jaworski public programs have examined themes of law, politics, and culture and have operated on the premise that exploring fundamental legal identities and attributes help us better understand who we are as Americans and as global citizens.

This year we are commemorating the 50th anniversary of the landmark U.S. Supreme Court ruling in Miranda v. ArizonaMiranda held that, in order for statements made by suspects during custodial interrogation to be admissible at trial, police must advise those suspects of certain constitutional rights. Familiarly, from the subsequent “Miranda warnings,” these include that suspects have the right to remain silent; that they have the right to an attorney; and that if they cannot afford an attorney, one will be provided to them.

In a 2000 case, Dickerson v. United States, the Court declared that “Miranda has become embedded in routine police practice to the point where the warnings have become part of our national culture.” The 2016 Leon Jaworski Public Program will explore whether Miranda is indeed still “part of our national culture” and, if so, why, and whether it will continue to be.


Russell Dean Covey, Professor of Law, Georgia State University; U.S. and international criminal law and procedure, police interrogation, crime and popular culture, “Miranda and the Media: Tracing the Cultural Evolution of a Constitutional Revolution.”

Angela J. Davis, Professor of Law, American University Washington College of Law; criminal law and procedure, prosecutorial power and racism in criminal justice system; Reporter, ABA Justice Kennedy Commission; co-author, Trial Stories (with Michael Tigar).

Ronald C. Machen, Partner, WilmerHale, Washington, DC; immediate past U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia (5 years), overseeing investigation and litigation of major criminal and civil cases.

Yue Ma, Associate Professor, Department of Law, Police Science and Criminal Justice Administration, John Jay College of Criminal Justice, City University of New York; JD/PhD Criminal Justice; comparative study of law and criminal justice; “A Comparative View of the Law of Interrogation.”