Offerings

Key:
+ subject to prerequisites, co-requisites, exclusions, or professor permission
1L first year required course
a extends over more than one quarter
c/l cross listed
e first-year elective
l Lecturer-taught seminar/simulation class
m seminar
p meets the professional responsibility/ethics requirement
r papers may meet substantial research paper (SRP) graduation requirement
s meets the professional skills requirement
u simulation class
w may meet writing project (WP) graduation requirement
x offering available for bidding
(#) the number of Law School credit hours earned for successful completion
  • Law and Politics: U.S. Courts as Political Institutions

    LAWS 51302 - 01 (3) +, c/l, m, r, w
    The purpose of this seminar is two-fold. First, the seminar aims to introduce students to the political science literature on courts understood as political institutions. In examining foundational parts of this literature, the seminar will focus on the relationship between the courts and other political institutions. The sorts of questions to be asked include: Are there interests that courts are particularly prone to support? What factors influence judicial decision-making? What effect does congressional or executive action have on court decisions? What impact do court decisions have? While the answers will not always be clear, students should complete the seminar with an awareness of and sensitivity to the political nature of the American legal system. Second, by critically assessing approaches to the study of the courts, the seminar seeks to highlight intelligent and sound approaches to the study of political institutions. Particular concern will focus on what assumptions students of courts have made, how evidence has been integrated into their studies, and what a good research design looks like.
    Winter 2016
    Gerald Rosenberg
  • Law and the Mental Health System

    LAWS 47001 - 01 (3) r, w
    The course examines the interrelationship between legal doctrine; procedural rules; medical, cultural, and social scientific understandings of mental disability; and institutional arrangements affecting the provision of services to the mentally disabled. Consideration is given to admission to and discharge from mental health facilities, to competency to consent to or to refuse treatment, to surrogate decision-making for those found incompetent, to the rights of those confined in mental health facilities; to discrimination against the mentally disabled, and to the rights of the mentally disabled in the criminal justice system. Grades are based on a final paper or a final take-home exam, and class participation.
    Autumn 2015
    Mark J. Heyrman
  • Litigating Financial Disputes

    LAWS 52523 - 01 (3) m, r, s, w, x
    This seminar will explore the practice, theory, and strategy of litigating financial disputes. These disputes include bankruptcy proceedings, shareholder derivative suits, securities fraud cases, white collar investigations, and suits alleging the breach of financial contracts. On the practical side, the seminar will explore the procedures for choosing and preparing financial experts to testify on valuation and other issues, interviewing and deposing executive officers and investment bankers, and common discovery issues that arise. On the theoretical side, we will explore critiques of the current systems of litigating these disputes and proposals for reform. In all areas, we will consider the strategic implications that lawyers must take into account both in litigating the disputes and in negotiating agreements in ways to avoid future disputes or reduce the risk of losing a dispute if one arises. In general, we will explore the overlap between litigation and transactional work that is at the heart of these disputes. For example, we will look at cases where litigation positions are used to facilitate leverage in transactions. The seminar's materials will be a mix of court opinions, pleadings filed in actual cases, transactional documents, and academic articles.
    Autumn 2015
    Anthony Casey
  • Public Morality and Legal Conservatism

    LAWS 78605 - 01 (3) c/l, m, r, w, x
    This seminar will study the philosophical background of contemporary legal arguments alluding to the idea of "public morality," in thinkers including Edmund Burke, James Fitzjames Stephen, and Patrick Devlin, and the criticisms of such arguments in thinkers including Jeremy Bentham, John Stuart Mill, and Herbert Hart. We will then study legal arguments on a range of topics, including drugs and alcohol, gambling, nudity, pornography and obscenity, non-standard sex, and marriage. Non-law students are welcome but need permission of the instructors, since space is limited. We are aiming for a total enrollment of 30, of which up to 10 can be non-law students (no undergraduates), and the rest will be law students, selected by lottery. Non-law students should apply to both professors by December 1, 2015, describing relevant background, especially in philosophy.
    Winter 2016
    Martha Nussbaum, William Baude
  • Public Opinion, Public Policy, and the Law

    LAWS 69002 - 01 (3) m, r, w, x
    This seminar will explore the intersection of public opinion, public policy, and the law. To date, questions about whether and how public opinion influences public policy have been addressed primarily by political scientists. But these questions are also vital to several legal domains, in particular constitutional law and election law. In the constitutional law context, the mistranslation of public opinion into public policy may be evidence of a political malfunction that requires judicial intervention. In the election law context, one of the most important functions of elections is to align the preferences of the electorate with the policies enacted by their representatives. The seminar will tackle these complex and interesting issues through readings drawn from legal scholarship, political theory, and empirical political science. An effort will also be made to have outside speakers present papers once or twice during the quarter.
    Spring 2016
    Nicholas Stephanopoulos
  • Racism, Law, and Social Sciences

    LAWS 54303 - 01 (3) m, r, w, x
    This seminar will provide an in-depth study of theories and methods for analysis of racialization in past and present societies. Analyses of the social construction of racial and ethnic identities have facilitated studies of the ways in which social differences are created, maintained, and masked. Subjects to be addressed in this seminar include the interrelation of racializing ideologies with other cultural and social dimensions, such as class, ethnicity, gender, political and legal structures, and economic influences. We will also consider the related histories of biological and genetic concepts of different races within the human species as part of the context of our study of racism operating within social processes. Requirements for this seminar course include preparation of a research paper and thoughtful class participation. Writing for this seminar may be used as partial fulfillment of the J.D. writing requirement (SRP or WP).
    Winter 2016
    Christopher Fennell
  • Roman Law

    LAWS 47702 - 01 (3) e, m, r, w, x
    The seminar develops skill in analyzing legal problems according to the processes of the Roman civil law, in contrast with those of the common law, and does not purport to give a comprehensive treatment of its detailed workings. The material provides an outline of the sources and procedure of Roman private law, followed by an examination of the Roman institutional system, the basis of most modern civil law codes. Particular emphasis is given to property and to obligations (contracts and torts). No knowledge of Latin is required for the seminar. This class will be assessed via a series of short research papers. Because this is a 1L elective, it will be graded on the curve usually applied to courses (as all 1L electives are) and will not count against the seminar limit.
    Spring 2016
    Richard A. Epstein
  • The Chicago Journal of International Law

    LAWS 99903 - 01 (1) a, r
    The Chicago Journal of International Law, a biannual student-edited journal, is the Law School’s newest journal. It publishes short Comments and articles by students and scholars on matters of international law and foreign affairs. Students gain access to participate as a staff member via the Write-on Competition or via the Topics Access process. Each student is paired with a faculty member who supervises the writing of the comment. Students may receive three credits for their work in writing the comments. The comments may also satisfy the SRP graduation requirement. Please see the Student Handbook for additional details regarding the competition, credits, and the SRP. For more information on the journal, please visit http://cjil.uchicago.edu.
    Autumn 2015
    Tom Ginsburg
  • The Chicago Journal of International Law

    LAWS 99903 - 01 (1) a, r
    The Chicago Journal of International Law, a biannual student-edited journal, is the Law School’s newest journal. It publishes short Comments and articles by students and scholars on matters of international law and foreign affairs. Students gain access to participate as a staff member via the Write-on Competition or via the Topics Access process. Each student is paired with a faculty member who supervises the writing of the comment. Students may receive three credits for their work in writing the comments. The comments may also satisfy the SRP graduation requirement. Please see the Student Handbook for additional details regarding the competition, credits, and the SRP. For more information on the journal, please visit http://cjil.uchicago.edu.
    Winter 2016
    Tom Ginsburg
  • The Chicago Journal of International Law

    LAWS 99903 - 01 (1) a, r
    The Chicago Journal of International Law, a biannual student-edited journal, is the Law School’s newest journal. It publishes short Comments and articles by students and scholars on matters of international law and foreign affairs. Students gain access to participate as a staff member via the Write-on Competition or via the Topics Access process. Each student is paired with a faculty member who supervises the writing of the comment. Students may receive three credits for their work in writing the comments. The comments may also satisfy the SRP graduation requirement. Please see the Student Handbook for additional details regarding the competition, credits, and the SRP. For more information on the journal, please visit http://cjil.uchicago.edu.
    Spring 2016
    Tom Ginsburg
  • The Financial Crisis of 2008: Law and Policy

    LAWS 42503 - 01 (3) m, r, w, x
    The financial crisis of 2008 was a watershed in American financial history. We look at the financial crisis and its aftermath from a predominantly legal perspective. Topics include why financial regulators were unable to stop the crisis from happening; how they responded to the crisis; and the policy and legal response to the crisis. Special attention will be given to the legal basis of the crisis response, and to the post-crisis litigation.
    Autumn 2015
    Eric Posner
  • The Law and Policy of Climate Change

    LAWS 46013 - 01 (2 to 3) m, r, w, x
    This seminar will explore scientific, legal, and policy issues relating to climate change. Among other topics, we will explore what types of policy instruments should be used to address climate change, ethical and fairness concerns raised by climate change and by the costs of preventing climate change, how we should think about our obligations to people who live in the future, how the costs of climate change should be incorporated into regulations, the Clean Air Act regulations on climate change, state and local actions, and the negotiations of international treaties (including looking at the positions of countries in the upcoming negotiations in Paris in December 2015). 80% of the grade will be based on reaction papers and (2) 20% on class participation (2 credits). Students have the option of writing a longer paper for either WP or SRP credit instead of writing reaction papers (3 credits).
    Autumn 2015
    David A. Weisbach
  • The Roberts Court

    LAWS 50312 - 01 (3) m, r, w, x
    Co-taught by Professor Lee Epstein and Mr. Adam Liptak (Supreme Court correspondent of the New York Times) with Judge Richard A. Posner and Professors Dennis Hutchinson and William M. Landes also participating, this seminar will examine the contemporary Supreme Court. Topics include the Court's membership; its procedures for selecting cases for review; the role of lawyers, law clerks, and journalists; and doctrinal developments in several areas of the law. This seminar will meet: Friday, January 29: 9:00 a.m. to noon; 2:00-4:00 p.m. Saturday, January 30, 2015: 9:00 a.m. to noon; 2:00-4:00 p.m. Sunday, January 31: 9:00 a.m. to noon with an additional session in the Spring quarter for paper presentations.
    Winter 2016
    Richard A. Posner, Dennis J. Hutchinson, William M. Landes, Lee Epstein, Adam Liptak
  • The University of Chicago Law Review

    LAWS 99901 - 01 (1) a, r
    The Law Review publishes articles and book reviews by leading scholars along with Comments written by students. In addition to participating in the editing and publication of legal scholarship, staff members have the unique opportunity to develop their own skills as writers and scholars. Students gain access to participate as a staff member via the Write-on Competition (which includes a Grade-on component) or via the Topics Access process. Each student is paired with a faculty member who supervises the writing of the comment. Students may receive three credits for their work in writing the comments. The comments may also satisfy the SRP graduation requirement. Please see the Student Handbook for additional details regarding the competition, credits, and the SRP. For more information on the Law Review, visit http://lawreview.uchicago.edu.
    Autumn 2015
    Tom Ginsburg
  • The University of Chicago Law Review

    LAWS 99901 - 01 (1) a, r
    The Law Review publishes articles and book reviews by leading scholars along with Comments written by students. In addition to participating in the editing and publication of legal scholarship, staff members have the unique opportunity to develop their own skills as writers and scholars. Students gain access to participate as a staff member via the Write-on Competition (which includes a Grade-on component) or via the Topics Access process. Each student is paired with a faculty member who supervises the writing of the comment. Students may receive three credits for their work in writing the comments. The comments may also satisfy the SRP graduation requirement. Please see the Student Handbook for additional details regarding the competition, credits, and the SRP. For more information on the Law Review, visit http://lawreview.uchicago.edu.
    Winter 2016
    Tom Ginsburg
  • The University of Chicago Law Review

    LAWS 99901 - 01 (1) a, r
    The Law Review publishes articles and book reviews by leading scholars along with Comments written by students. In addition to participating in the editing and publication of legal scholarship, staff members have the unique opportunity to develop their own skills as writers and scholars. Students gain access to participate as a staff member via the Write-on Competition (which includes a Grade-on component) or via the Topics Access process. Each student is paired with a faculty member who supervises the writing of the comment. Students may receive three credits for their work in writing the comments. The comments may also satisfy the SRP graduation requirement. Please see the Student Handbook for additional details regarding the competition, credits, and the SRP. For more information on the Law Review, visit http://lawreview.uchicago.edu.
    Spring 2016
    Tom Ginsburg
  • The University of Chicago Legal Forum

    LAWS 99902 - 01 (1) a, r
    The Legal Forum is the Law School’s topical law journal. Its student board annually publishes a volume of articles (by academics and practitioners) and Comments (by students) that focus on a single area of the law. Each fall the Legal Forum hosts a symposium at which the authors of the articles present their work. Students gain access to participate as a staff member via the Write-on Competition or via the Topics Access process. Each student is paired with a faculty member who supervises the writing of the comment. Students may receive three credits for their work in writing the comments. The comments may also satisfy the SRP graduation requirement. Please see the Student Handbook for additional details regarding the competition, credits, and the SRP. For more information on the Legal Forum, please visit http://legal-forum.uchicago.edu.
    Autumn 2015
    Tom Ginsburg
  • The University of Chicago Legal Forum

    LAWS 99902 - 01 (1) a, r
    The Legal Forum is the Law School’s topical law journal. Its student board annually publishes a volume of articles (by academics and practitioners) and Comments (by students) that focus on a single area of the law. Each fall the Legal Forum hosts a symposium at which the authors of the articles present their work. Students gain access to participate as a staff member via the Write-on Competition or via the Topics Access process. Each student is paired with a faculty member who supervises the writing of the comment. Students may receive three credits for their work in writing the comments. The comments may also satisfy the SRP graduation requirement. Please see the Student Handbook for additional details regarding the competition, credits, and the SRP. For more information on the Legal Forum, please visit http://legal-forum.uchicago.edu.
    Winter 2016
    Tom Ginsburg
  • The University of Chicago Legal Forum

    LAWS 99902 - 01 (1) a, r
    The Legal Forum is the Law School’s topical law journal. Its student board annually publishes a volume of articles (by academics and practitioners) and Comments (by students) that focus on a single area of the law. Each fall the Legal Forum hosts a symposium at which the authors of the articles present their work. Students gain access to participate as a staff member via the Write-on Competition or via the Topics Access process. Each student is paired with a faculty member who supervises the writing of the comment. Students may receive three credits for their work in writing the comments. The comments may also satisfy the SRP graduation requirement. Please see the Student Handbook for additional details regarding credits and the SRP. For more information on the Legal Forum, please visit http://legal-forum.uchicago.edu.
    Spring 2016
    Tom Ginsburg
  • Workshop: Constitutional Law

    LAWS 63612 - 01 (1) a, m, r, w, x
    This workshop, conducted over three sequential quarters, exposes students to current academic work in constitutional law and theory and other areas of public law. Workshop sessions are devoted to the presentation and discussion of papers from outside speakers, at six to eight sessions to be conducted regularly throughout the academic year. Enrollment may be limited. This workshop may be taken for fulfillment of the Substantial Research Paper graduation requirement. Grading is based on a substantial paper (or two shorter papers) plus brief reaction papers on each of the workshop papers. As an alternative to writing a long paper, you may write two or more extended reaction papers (i.e., 10-12 pages) to the papers presented in the workshop. You have to get our approval in advance for this option. We encourage it if you find that you have a lot to say about some of the workshop papers. If you wish to receive Writing Project (WP) credit for this option, you must submit a draft of each of the two long response papers to us and satisfactorily incorporate our suggestions.
    Autumn 2015
    Justin Driver