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218.3 sec. 1 - Introduction to U.S. Legal and Constitutional History (Spring 2013)

Instructor: Karen Tani  (view instructor's teaching evaluations | profile)
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Units: 3
Meeting Time: MTu 11:20-12:35
Meeting Location: 130

Course Start: January 07, 2013
Course Control Number (Non-1Ls): 49574

This course is designed to place the American legal system and its laws in context by exploring basic themes and events in U.S. legal and constitutional history from the American Revolution to the present. Because of the richness of the subject matter and the wealth of materials available, the course will necessarily be selective. It will focus on four major areas of legal and constitutional development:

1. The state: including topics such as war and other state-sanctioned violence, regulation, protection of individual rights, citizenship, and federalism;

2. The economy: including immigration, racially-based servitude, industrialization, and market development and regulation;

3. Property: including property in persons, land, business, money;

4. Private spaces: including family, sexuality, gender, and private relations of authority.

Students will gain from this course a deeper understanding of important laws and legal principles, as well as a rich sense of law’s constraining and liberating possibilities.

The course will be conducted primarily in lecture format. Evaluation will be based on either a take-away exam or an historiographical essay (student’s choice). Please consult the syllabus for further information.


Exam Notes: TH/P
Course Category: Legal Theory and History
This course is cross-listed in the following categories:
Law and Society

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