lesson Five Twelve Angry Men (Part One)
Discussions 1.What was the evidence against the boy? 2.How did it fall piece by piece through the discussion? 3.What would have happened to the boy if he had been found guilty?
About the author Reginald Rose (1920----) is a native New Yorker, best known as a writer for television. The Twelve Angry Men was written in 1954 based on his experience as a juror. The play was turned into a movie in 1957 with Henry Fonda starring as No.8. The present text if based on of that movie, with much abridgement. What distinguished Rose’s teleplays was their direct preoccupation with social and political issues.
Background Information Twelve Angry Men was adapted by Reginald Rose in 1950s. It is about an 18-year-old boy who is on trial for murder, accused of knifing his father to death. Twelve jurors retire to the jury room, having been admonished that the defendant innocent until prevent guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. It turned out that in the voting, all the 11 jurors vote for conviction, except No.8, who feels there is a reasonable doubt, which prevents a quick verdict. At last, juror 8 convinces every man on the jury that the charge to the defendant was not conclusively proved to convict him .
Useful Legal Terms • Group 1: judicial system (司法制度); judicial proceedings (诉讼程序): criminal law (刑法); civil law (民法); criminal court (刑事法庭); civil court (民事法庭); • Group 2: the accused/ the defendant(被告); the accuser (原告); the prosecutor (公诉人); defense lawyer (辩护律师); judge (法官); attorney general (首席检察官); jury (陪审团); grand jury (大陪审团); witness (证人); a ex-convict (有前科的人);
Group 3: verdict (陪审团的裁决); sentence (法官的判决); acquittal (无罪); convict (判决有罪); testify (作证); testimony (证言); identify (辨认); cross-examination (盘问); appeal (上诉); overrule (驳回上诉); sustain (法庭确认)
Jury Trial • The jury trial is an important component in the U.S. judicial system. The jury consists of 12 jurors, selected at random, agreed on by the lawyers of the two sides, who will, after hearing all the evidenced and cross-examination and careful deliberation, give a verdict of guilty or not guilty. Today no jury would be made up entirely of men any more. Women now serve on juries as much as men.
Court System • ① The accused is deemed innocent until and unless proved “ guilty” beyond a reasonable doubt. • ② In many jurisdictions, the majority of a jury is not sufficient to find a defendant guilty of a felony. • ③ A trial does not aim at discovering who commit a particular crime, but rather the innocence or guilt of the accused. • ④ The system is not infallible and can be quite precarious.
The Twelve Jurors • A summary of the anonymous characters helps to flesh out their characters and backgrounds. The order in which each eventually decides to vote "not guilty" is given in brackets: • Juror #1 (The Foreman): (Martin Balsam) A high-school assistant head coach, doggedly concerned to keep the proceedings formal and maintain authority; easily frustrated and sensitive when someone objects to his control; inadequate for the job as foreman, not a natural leader and over-shadowed by Juror # 8's natural leadership
Juror #2: (John Fiedler) A wimpy, balding bank clerk/teller, easily persuaded, meek, hesitant, goes along with the majority, eagerly offers cough drops to other men during tense times of argument; better memory than # 4 about film title • Juror #3: (Lee J. Cobb) Runs a messenger service (the "Beck and Call" Company), a bullying, rude and husky man, extremely opinionated and biased, completely intolerant, forceful and loud-mouthed, temperamental and vengeful; estrangement from his own teenaged son causes him to be hateful and hostile toward all young people (and the defendant); arrogant, quick-angered, quick-to-convict, and defiant until the very end
Juror #4: (E. G. Marshall) Well-educated, smug and conceited, well-dressed stockbroker, presumably wealthy; studious, methodical, possesses an incredible recall and grasp of the facts of the case; common-sensical, dispassionate, cool-headed and rational, yet stuffy and prim; often displays a stern glare; treats the case like a puzzle to be deductively solved rather than as a case that may send the defendant to death; claims that he never sweats • Juror #5: (Jack Klugman) Naive, insecure, frightened, reserved; has a slum-dwelling upbringing that the case resurrects in his mind; a guilty vote would distance him from his past; nicknamed "Baltimore" by Juror # 7 because of his support of the Orioles; he may be Hispanic but this is only speculation
Juror #6: (Edward Binns) A typical "working man," dull-witted, experiences difficulty in making up his own mind, a follower; probably a manual laborer or painter; respectful of older juror and willing to back up his words with fists • Juror #7: (Jack Warden) Clownish, impatient salesman (of marmalade the previous year), a flashy dresser, gum-chewing, obsessed baseball fan who wants to leave as soon as possible to attend evening game; throws wadded up paper balls at the fan; uses baseball metaphors and references throughout all his statements (he tells the foreman to "stay in there and pitch"); lacks complete human concern for the defendant and for the immigrant juror; extroverted; keeps up amusing banter and even impersonates James Cagney at one point; votes with the majority
Juror #8: (Henry Fonda) An architect, instigates a thoughtful reconsideration of the case against the accused; symbolically clad in white; a liberal-minded, patient truth-and-justice seeker who uses soft-spoken, calm logical reasoning; balanced, decent, courageous, well-spoken and concerned; considered a do-gooder (who is just wasting others' time) by some of the prejudiced jurors; named Davis • Juror #9: (Joseph Sweeney) Eldest man in group, white-haired, thin, retiring and resigned to death but has a resurgence of life during deliberations; soft-spoken but perceptive, fair-minded; named McCardle
Juror #10: (Ed Begley) A garage owner, who simmers with anger, bitterness, racist bigotry; nasty, repellent, intolerant, reactionary and accusative; segregates the world into 'us' and 'them'; needs the support of others to reinforce his manic rants • Juror #11: (George Voskovec) A watchmaker, speaks with a heavy accent, of German-European descent, a recent refugee and immigrant; expresses reverence and respect for American democracy, its system of justice, and the infallibility of the Law • Juror #12: (Robert Webber) Well-dressed, smooth-talking business ad man with thick black glasses; doodles cereal box slogan and packaging ideas for "Rice Pops"; superficial, easily-swayed, and easy-going; vacillating, lacks deep convictions or belief system; uses advertising talk at one point: "run this idea up the flagpole and see if anybody salutes it"
About the text • Twelve Angry Men was adapted by Reginald Roes in1950s. It is about an 18-year-old boy who is on trial for murder, accused of knifing his father to death .The twelve jurors retire to the jury room, having been admonished that the defendant is innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. It turned out that in the first voting .all the 11 jurors vote for conviction. except No.8,who feels there is a reasonable doubt ,which prevent a quick verdict. The juror8 resolutely and painstakingly explains his reasons for doing that. During the heated deliberations, evidence that felt rock-solid is revealed to be dubious and the hidden preconceptions and assumptions of the jurors are revealed. At last, juror8 convinces every man on the jury that the charge to the defendant was not conclusively proved to convict him.
Explanation of the text in details • Since when is dishonesty a group characteristic? • I am surprised to hear you that as if dishonesty has ever been a group characteristic. This is a retort to No. 10’s remark from No. 9 who is opposed to stereotyped opinions about the poor people. Some individuals are dishonest. They might be rich or poor. It has nothing to do with the social group they belong to. To condemn a whole group of people as immoral or inferior is the common attitude of racists and other bigots.
Innocent until proven guilty. The burden of proof is on the prosecution. • The American legal system is based on the confrontation principle with the prosecutor trying his utmost to prove the accused guilty and the defense lawyer trying his best to prove his client not guilty. When all the facts are out, then the jury makes a decision.
You pulled a real bright trick. Now supposed you tell me what it proves. Maybe there are 10 knives like that. So what? The discovery of the age or something. • You performed a really clever trick. Now I imagine what you are going to prove because he thinks that No.8 could prove nothing. What another has just said? You think is the great discovery of this historical period or what?
Why don’t you drop a quarter in the collection-box? • Why don’t you just donate some money in the church if that will make you feel better?
Questions on the text 1.Why doesn’t the author give names to the characters in the drama? Is this play merely a conflict among people or is it also a conflict of ideas? Give some comments. 2.What was the evidence presented at the court against the boy? What would have happened to the boy if he had been found guilty? 3.What does No.8 do that casts the first serious doubt on the boy’s guilt? What effect does it have on the second vote? 4.What question does No.8 raised that casts the second doubt on the boy’s guilt?
Language points • Lay sb. Out to knock sb. down 把…打晕 例： The robber laid the man out. 抢劫犯把这个人打晕了。 There’s no point standing. There ‘s no reason why we should all stand here. • (注释) There is no point … 表示“没有什么原因/意义”。 例：I could see that there was no point in arguing with him. 我知道和他争论没有什么意义。 • Talk it Out to solve Or decide sth .through discussing 通过讨论来解决或决定某事。 例：We need to spend a little time talking it out . 我们需要花点时间谈谈，以解决这个问题。
Grammar exercises Study these sentences and find out the grammatical function of each of the italicized gerund phrase. 1.They are the jury for the trial of a boy charged with murdering his father . (para.1) 2.It’s not easy to send to send the boy off to die without talking about it first. (para.17) 3.Let’s stop being so sensitive. (para.56) 4.I kept putting myself in the kid’s place. (para.60) 5.A few years later Michael had another good idea, to trade stamps by advertising in stamp magazines. (Lesson 3, para.7)
Written work Translate the passage into English 在一些西方国家，有一条指导刑事法庭的原则，即法庭必须排除任何在理疑点而确定被告的罪行。也就是说，被告在被证明有罪之前应被认为是无罪的。有理疑点指的是一个普通，公正，诚实，理智并且谨慎的人的头脑里对被告罪行产生的疑点。 从理论上说，在被告被证明有罪之前认为他无罪的观念能确保不判断，不冤枉好人。在独幕剧《十二个愤怒的人》中，八号陪审员就是利用这一原则来挽救那个小伙子的性命。他提出一个又一个有理疑点，最后终于使其他陪审员同意没有充分的证据证明那小伙子是有罪的。