Abdel-Khalik on Scènes à Faire As Identity Trait Stereotyping @UMKCLaw

Jasmine Abdel-Khalik, University of Missouri, Kansas City, is published Scènes à Faire As Identity Trait Stereotyping in volume 2 of the Business, Entrepreneurship & Tax Law Review (2018). Here is the abstract. Nichols v. Universal Pictures is one of the seminal copyright cases, but there is an unexplored component the decision – the court's discussion of the "low comedy Jew and Irishman." The decision creates at least one place where the law not only recognizes but may expect and encourage stereotyping based on race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, gender expression, nationality, and the like (“identity traits”) – stock characters. A stock character is the archetype of a story’s character and, as such, is excluded from copyright protection, making the stock freely available for other authors to use. However, harm arises when courts agree that a stock character is comprised of an identity trait and any other…

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