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
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
  • Advanced Law and Economics: Theory and Practice

    LAWS 55401 - 01 (3) +, c/l, r, w
    This course examines theoretical and empirical work in the economic analysis of law. It will cover, among other things, optimal tort rules, models of contract liability and remedies, optimal criminal rules, settlement and plea bargaining, and models of judicial behavior. Students are required to be PhD students in the Economics Department, the Harris School or the Booth School, or law students. Students should have the equivalent of an undergraduate economics degree or have taken Economic Analysis of the Law in the Law School. The course will expect students to have Economics PhD-level math skills. Students will be required to submit 3-4 short research proposals related to topics covered in class. These proposals are sketches of original research that, once developed, could yield publishable academic papers.
    Spring 2015
    Anup Malani
  • Advanced Topics in Moral, Political and Legal Philosophy

    LAWS 78603 - 01 (3) +, c/l, m, r, w
    The topic for Winter 2015 is “Freedom and Responsibility, Contemporary and Historical.” We will begin by canvassing the major philosophical positions in the Anglophone literature on free will and moral responsibility over the past half-century, with readings drawn from some or all of P.F. Strawson, G. Strawson, R. Kane, H. Frankfurt, G. Watson, and others. In the second half of the seminar we will step back to look at the treatment of these same issues by major figures in the history of philosophy, including M. Frede’s A Free Will: Origins of the Notion in Ancient Thought, as well as primary texts by some or all of Hume, Kant, Hegel, Schopenhauer, Nietzsche, and Sartre. The seminar is open to philosophy Ph.D. students without permission; to J.D. students with instructor permission; and to others with instructor permission.
    Winter 2015
    Brian Leiter, Michael Forster
  • Anthropology and Law

    LAWS 93812 - 01 (3) m, r, w, x
    This seminar for law students and graduate students in the social sciences will provide an introduction to the field of legal anthropology. We will address anthropological theories of the nature of law and disputes, examine related studies of legal structures in non-Western cultures, and consider the uses of anthropology in studying facets of our own legal system. By examining individual legal institutions in the context of their particular cultural settings, we can begin to make cross-cultural comparisons and contrasts. In so doing, we confront the challenge of interpreting and understanding the legal rules and institutions of other cultures while assessing the impact of our own social norms and biases on the analysis. Thus, our analytic and interpretative approach will require us to examine the cultural assumptions that underpin various aspects of our own belief systems and the American legal system. The grade is based on a final written paper (80%) and class participation (20%).
    Winter 2015
    Christopher Fennell
  • Canonical Ideas in Legal Thought

    LAWS 57013 - 01 (2) a, m, r, w
    This year-long research seminar is the equivalent of a research colloquium in a PhD program. During the Autumn quarter, students will read, discuss, and critique some of the most influential law review articles from the twentieth century, as well as newer papers that extend and apply those canonical ideas to modern legal problems. The readings will consist of a healthy mix of public law and private law, and various scholarly methodologies. During the Autumn quarter, students will write short reaction papers on the readings, and each student will once during the term facilitate the class discussion of an article, drawing on their outside research to do so. Students will also work with faculty to identify a topic for a substantial research paper. During the Winter quarter, the seminar will not meet in formal sessions, but each student will work on his or her research paper and will meet individually with the instructors to assess the paper’s progress. During the Spring quarter, the seminar will reconvene, and students will workshop their drafts (i.e., each student will circulate his or her draft in advance and answer questions from students and faculty). Students are expected to produce papers of publishable quality because the seminar’s ultimate goal is to prepare students for the process of entering the legal academy. Students will receive an Autumn quarter grade based on the reaction papers, discussion facilitation, and class participation. Students will receive a separate grade for the Winter and Spring quarters based on the quality of their research papers and class participation. Every student must enroll for the entire year; students may not drop the class after the Autumn quarter. Students may only enroll with the permission of the instructors. Students interested in enrolling should email Professors Abebe, Malani, and Masur a resume and a one-paragraph statement explaining why they would like to enroll in the seminar no later than August 21, 2014.
    Winter 2015
    Daniel Abebe, Anup Malani, Jonathan Masur
  • Canonical Ideas in Legal Thought

    LAWS 57013 - 01 (2) a, m, r, w
    This year-long research seminar is the equivalent of a research colloquium in a PhD program. During the Autumn quarter, students will read, discuss, and critique some of the most influential law review articles from the twentieth century, as well as newer papers that extend and apply those canonical ideas to modern legal problems. The readings will consist of a healthy mix of public law and private law, and various scholarly methodologies. During the Autumn quarter, students will write short reaction papers on the readings, and each student will once during the term facilitate the class discussion of an article, drawing on their outside research to do so. Students will also work with faculty to identify a topic for a substantial research paper. During the Winter quarter, the seminar will not meet in formal sessions, but each student will work on his or her research paper and will meet individually with the instructors to assess the paper’s progress. During the Spring quarter, the seminar will reconvene, and students will workshop their drafts (i.e., each student will circulate his or her draft in advance and answer questions from students and faculty). Students are expected to produce papers of publishable quality because the seminar’s ultimate goal is to prepare students for the process of entering the legal academy. Students will receive an Autumn quarter grade based on the reaction papers, discussion facilitation, and class participation. Students will receive a separate grade for the Winter and Spring quarters based on the quality of their research papers and class participation. Every student must enroll for the entire year; students may not drop the class after the Autumn quarter. Students may only enroll with the permission of the instructors. Students interested in enrolling should email Professors Abebe, Malani, and Masur a resume and a one-paragraph statement explaining why they would like to enroll in the seminar no later than August 21, 2014.
    Spring 2015
    Daniel Abebe, Anup Malani, Jonathan Masur
  • Comparative Constitutional Design

    LAWS 50102 - 01 (3) c/l, m, r, w, x
    Recent constitutional reconstructions in the Middle East have called new attention to the problems of institutional design of political and legal systems. In this seminar we will examine the design and implementation of national constitutions. In particular, we will address the following questions. What are the basic elements of constitutions? How do these elements differ across time, across region, and across regime type? What is the process by which states draft and implement constitutions? What models, theories, and writings have influenced the framers of constitutions? In this seminar, we will review the historical roots of constitutions and investigate their provisions and formal characteristics. We will also discuss the circumstances surrounding the drafting of several exemplary or noteworthy constitutions, from various regions of the world. We will then examine particular features of institutional design in depth, and analyze the factors that make constitutions effective and enduring. The grade is based on a series of short research papers and a final written paper.
    Autumn 2014
    Tom Ginsburg
  • Constitutional Law V: Freedom of Religion

    LAWS 40501 - 01 (3) +, r
    This course explores religious freedom in America, especially under the first amendment. It is recommended that students first take Constitutional Law I. Students who have completed Constitutional Law IV are ineligible to enroll in this course. The grade is based on a substantial paper, series of short papers, or final examination, with class participation taken into account. Paper writers require permission of the instructor.
    Spring 2015
    Mary Anne Case
  • Corporate Governance in Emerging Markets

    LAWS 75006 - 01 (3) m, r, w, x
    This seminar provides an overview of recent developments and scholarship relating to corporate governance, primarily from a “law and finance” perspective. It particularly emphasizes the context of developing and transitional economies and other jurisdictions without a long tradition of strong corporate and securities law and enforcement. Topics to be covered include: 1) The emerging markets context, the distinctive legal and governance issues raised by firms with controlling shareholders, and the legal and institutional preconditions for stock market development 2) The debate on the impact of historical legal origins on stock market development 3) Legal and economic aspects of tunneling and other forms of self-dealing among firms with controlling shareholders 4) The evidence on the impact of corporate law and corporate governance reforms on firm value and stock market development 5) The distinctive context of corporate governance in China, including issues raised by the role of governmental entities as controlling shareholders 6) Regulatory dualism and the regulation of hostile takeovers in emerging markets 7) The causes and implications of the phenomenon of international cross-listing 8) The role of public and private enforcement of securities law in stock market development 9) The relationship between taxation and corporate governance While some background in areas such as corporate and securities law would be helpful, there is no formal prerequisite for the seminar. Some readings from the “law and finance” literature will be interdisciplinary in approach, and some undertake statistical analysis. However, no background in finance or statistics will be assumed. Rather, the emphasis will be on understanding the implications of the readings for law and policy. The grade is based on a substantial paper and class participation.
    Winter 2015
    Dhammika Dharmapala
  • European Legal History

    LAWS 91901 - 01 (2 to 3) m, r, w, x
    This seminar aims to give students an appreciation of the basic themes and most important events in European (as opposed to English) legal history. It begins with the Roman law formulated under the Emperor Justinian and moves forward to the 19th century. Among the subjects covered are Germanic law, the rise of legal science beginning in the 12th century, the nature of the ius commune, legal humanism, the reception of Roman law, the natural law school, and the movement towards Codification. In addition to the text book, students are expected to read one law review article each week and to share it with the class. They are permitted to write a research paper, but a final examination will also be offered as an option.
    Winter 2015
    R. H. Helmholz
  • Food Law

    LAWS 94503 - 01 (3) m, r, w, x
    This seminar will examine issues relating to food law and food policy. Topic covered will include: food safety, food labeling, food patents, corn policy, regulation of food quality, factory farming, obligations of food retailers, and more. Students will have to write an SRP paper and make a presentation in class.
    Autumn 2014
    Omri Ben-Shahar
  • Global Inequality

    LAWS 92403 - 01 (3) c/l, m, r, w, x
    Global income and wealth are highly concentrated. The richest 2% of the population own about half of the global assets. Per capita income in the United States is around $47,000 and in Europe it is around $30,500, while in India it is $3,400 and in Congo, it is $329. There are equally unsettling inequalities in longevity, health, and education. In this class, we ask what duties nations and individuals have to address these inequalities and what are the best strategies for doing so. What role must each country play in helping itself? What is the role of international agreements and agencies, of NGOs, and of corporations in addressing global poverty? How do we weigh policies that emphasize growth against policies that emphasize within-country equality, health, or education? In seeking answers to these questions, the class will combine readings on the law and economics of global development with readings on the philosophy of global justice. A particular focus will be on the role that legal institutions, both domestic and international, play in discharging these duties. For, example, we might focus on how a nation with natural resources can design legal institutions to ensure they are exploited for the benefit of the citizens of the country. Students will be expected to write a paper, which may qualify for substantial writing credit. Non-law students are welcome but need permission of the instructors, since space is limited.
    Winter 2015
    Martha Nussbaum, David A. Weisbach
  • History of Civil Liberties in the United States

    LAWS 70707 - 01 (3) m, r, w, x
    This seminar examines changing understandings of civil liberties in American legal history. It emphasizes legal and ideological contests over the meaning of free speech, religious freedom, and reproductive rights during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Readings explore the intersection between legal struggles and broader developments in social, cultural, and political history, with a particular focus on the labor, civil rights, and feminist movements. The grade is based on a final written paper and class participation.
    Spring 2015
    Laura Weinrib
  • Independent Research

    LAWS 49901 - 01 (1 to 3) +, r, w
    Second-year, third-year, and LL.M. students may earn course credit by independent research under the supervision of a member of the faculty. Such projects are arranged by consultation between the student and the particular member of the faculty in whose field the proposed topic falls.
    Autumn 2014
  • Independent Research

    LAWS 49901 - 01 (1 to 3) +, r, w
    Second-year, third-year, and LL.M. students may earn course credit by independent research under the supervision of a member of the faculty. Such projects are arranged by consultation between the student and the particular member of the faculty in whose field the proposed topic falls.
    Winter 2015
  • Independent Research

    LAWS 49901 - 01 (1 to 3) +, r, w
    Second-year, third-year, and LL.M. students may earn course credit by independent research under the supervision of a member of the faculty. Such projects are arranged by consultation between the student and the particular member of the faculty in whose field the proposed topic falls.
    Spring 2015
  • International Finance

    LAWS 48901 - 01 (3) c/l, m, r, w, x
    Today the volume of international financial flows far exceeds the volume of international trade. This seminar addresses the international regulatory aspects of U. S. domestic banking and security markets and contrasts them with foreign markets. The focus is on U.S., European, and other regulatory systems and the role of international financial institutions. In addition to introductory material on U.S. banking and securities regulation, foreign exchange markets, and the growth of Eurocurrency markets, two particularly current topics will be addressed: (1) international regulatory aspects of the recent international financial crisis and (2) changes in U.S. law made or under consideration to respond to that crisis. Special attention will be paid to the "Euro problem" and to Chinese financial markets. The grade is based on a final written paper.
    Autumn 2014
    Kenneth W. Dam
  • International Human Rights

    LAWS 96101 - 01 (3) c/l, r, w
    This course is an introduction to international human rights law, covering the major instruments and institutions that operate on the international plane. It includes discussion of the conceptual underpinnings of human rights, the structure of the United Nations System, the major international treaties, regional human rights machinery, and the interplay of national and international systems in enforcing human rights. There are no prerequisites. Grading will be on the basis of a take-home exam at the end of the quarter. Students who wish to write, in lieu of the exam, a paper sufficient to satisfy the substantial writing requirement, may do so upon approval of the topic in advance.
    Winter 2015
    Tom Ginsburg
  • 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. There will be a mandatory preliminary meeting for interested students in the Autumn; law student enrollment is limited to 7. There is a choice. Students can either write two 5-7 page analytic papers and complete a take-home final or they can write one 5-7 page analytic paper and undertake a substantial research paper. Papers may meet the substantial research paper (SRP) graduation requirement.
    Winter 2015
    Gerald Rosenberg
  • Law and Race

    LAWS 69104 - 01 (3) m, r, w, x
    This seminar explores the intersection of race with legal institutions in both historical and contemporary contexts. Given that the seminar is designed to culminate in a scholarly paper, much of the reading will consist of canonical law review articles and other forms of legal scholarship. Although students are welcome to address a wide range of paper topics, the assigned readings will include: jury nullification, racial profiling, racial tokenism, and critical race theory (and its discontents). Students will be evaluated upon class participation and a substantial written paper.
    Spring 2015
    Justin Driver
  • 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 menta