Legal narrative in court judgments: Hegemonic construction of reality


Le Cheng


City University of Hong Kong


King Kui Sin


City University of Hong Kong


Jian Li


City University of Hong Kong


Narrative has been studied in various disciplines, which contributes to the analysis of legal narratives. The paper makes an attempt to understand legal narrative mainly from socio-linguistic and cognitive-linguistic perspectives and argues the constructive nature in legal narratives, and establishes hegemony in legal narratives as convention. Based on case study, the paper contends that spatial manipulation and voice manipulation are employed by court as strategies to create legal hegemony in narratives, and unraveling such strategies helps to deconstruct legal hegemony, which, if employed by a higher court, turns to be another turn of narrative hegemony.


legal narrative; court judgment; legal hegemony; reality construction

Publication Date

December 20, 2007


Volume 1, Issue 2

Citation information

Cheng, Le, King Kui Sin, and Jian Li. 2007. “Legal narrative in court judgments: Hegemonic construction of reality.” Language. Text. Society 1 (2): e59-e70. (Journal title at the time of publication: SamaraAltLinguo E-Journal.)


author = {Cheng, Le and Sin, King Kui and Li, Jian},
title = {{Legal narrative in court judgments: Hegemonic construction of reality}},
journal = {Language. Text. Society},
year = {2007},
volume = {1},
number = {2},
pages = {59–70},
url = {},


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