Western Carolina University business law students will present a mock trial based on the Ron Rash novel “Serena” at a courtroom in the Jackson County Justice and Administration Building on Tuesday, Dec. 9.
The event, which lasts three hours and begins at 5 p.m., is free and open to the public.
Rash, an award-winning writer and WCU’s Parris Distinguished Professor of Appalachian Culture, authored “Serena,” and the novel set in Western North Carolina is this year’s selection for the WCU Office of First Year Experience’s One Book program. The program is designed to encourage students to have common intellectual conversation about one book. Freshmen were provided with copies of the novel, which was incorporated into transition courses as well as multiple upper-level courses in a range of disciplines.
Jayne Zanglein, professor of business law, assigned her students to develop a trial based on the characters and a legal issue in “Serena.” They crafted a case set in 1930 titled “Susan Harrill, as spouse ‘ad litem’ on behalf of William Harrill, deceased, Plaintiff v. The Pemberton Lumber Company, Defendant.”
In the lawsuit, Harrill alleges that an agent of the lumber company intentionally cut a cable wire in an attempt to injure or kill her husband.
The mock trial will involve a range of witnesses including the book’s title character, Serena Pemberton, as the wife of the lumber company manager. Exhibits include historical images, detailed information and diagrams of log loaders and equipment, and statistics regarding workplace injuries in the southern United States from pulpwood logging.
For more information, contact Zanglein at 828-227-7191.