Audio Archives

From intimate lunchtime talks by our world-renowned faculty to academic conferences curated by student organizations, the Law School is continually host to some of the most groundbreaking ideas in the legal academy and beyond. Since 2005, the Law School has been committed to sharing these ideas with not only our campus community but with the world at large by making available free audio recordings of selected events. Please use the filters below to find a recording that might interest you, or use the page links at the bottom to browse through the list at your leisure.

  • November 29, 2012

    What can law do well? It tries to “intervene” in order to control antisocial behavior, to enforce promises, and to prevent violence. But it is also called on to “intermediate” so that citizens need not confront one another directly and need not even control themselves.

  • September 20, 2012

    Schools teach patriotism all the time, but many people think that this is a bad idea. Patriotic rituals may convey misplaced and hierarchical values; they may coerce conscience; and they may promote a dangerous type of uncritical homogeneity. On the other hand, it seems difficult to motivate...

  • September 6, 2012

    A popular type of consumer transaction is called "No Contract." Businesses lure consumers with the "no contract" assurance - a promise that consumer can walk away anytime, without any commitment. This scheme is increasingly common in cable and phone services, health clubs, security services...

  • June 21, 2012

    This talk, recorded on May 1, 2012, as part of the Chicago's Best Ideas lecture series, puts in an explicitly Coasian context some of the speaker's prior work on the new reproductive technologies and on analogies in the evolution of the laws governing marriage and business corporations.

  • April 5, 2012

    How has the Supreme Court confirmation process changed over the years? Are members of the Senate more prone to oppose nominees today than they were in the past? If so, to what extent is this due to the controversy over the Bork nomination?

  • March 22, 2012

    In 1937, Ronald Coase asked a profound question: if markets are so efficient at allocating resources, why are so many resources allocated within firms?  Coase’s answer was that market allocation entailed transactions costs and, when these were very high, transactions will take place...

  • March 8, 2012

    It is common to hear Europe described today as the power of the past. Europe is perceived to be weak militarily. Its relative economic power is declining as Asia’s is rising.  Its common currency may be on the verge of disintegrating.

  • December 29, 2011

    As we near the end of the first term of our nation’s first African American President, does race still matter?  How have our perceptions of race changed?

  • October 6, 2011

    Ponzi schemes come in many sizes. The colossal fraud engineered by Bernard Madoff is an occasion to rethink the legal rules and remedies associated with such episodes. But then there are smaller Ponzi-like schemes, such as fraud in law school admissions, and the question of whether law does...

  • June 2, 2011

    One of the major functions of the FDA is to check new drugs for their safety and effectiveness. The chief tool for doing this has been the double-blind clinical trial.