How insulting to have juxtaposed "lawyers" and "gangsters" in the title, to hint that lawyers are not engaged in a supremely noble profession, to insinuate a commonality between counselors-at-law and godfathers. There will be no explicit comparisons here, for this is an Essay about Japanese legal education, not La Cosa Nostra. Instead I offer a description of how Japan trains its lawyers and what lawyers in Japan do. I'll also talk a bit about how gangsters in Japan are trained, and what they do. Perhaps a serendipitous connection will present itself.
I begin by briefly discussing the old system of training Japanese lawyers and some of the forces that led to the breakdown of that system. I then detail and analyze the new system, much of which was borrowed from the United States after careful investigation. Finally, I offer a few words about Japanese gangsters, the yakuza. It's not impossible that the story suggests similarities between lawyers and their illegal counterparts.
Mark D. West,
Making Lawyers (and Gangsters) in Japan,
60 Vanderbilt Law Review
Available at: https://scholarship.law.vanderbilt.edu/vlr/vol60/iss2/6