Law Schedule of Classes

NOTE: Course offerings change. Classes offered this semester may not be offered in future semesters.


267.4 sec. 001 - Law & History Foundation Seminar (Fall 2022)

Instructor: Christopher Tomlins  (view instructor's teaching evaluations - degree students only | profile)
View all teaching evaluations for this course - degree students only

Units: 3
Grading Designation: Graded
Mode of Instruction: In-Person

Meeting:

M 2:10 PM - 5:00 PM
Location: 2240 Piedmont 102
From August 22, 2022
To November 28, 2022

Course Start: August 22, 2022
Course End: November 28, 2022
Class Number: 31947

Enrollment info:
Enrolled: 14
Waitlisted: 0
Enroll Limit: 14
As of: 08/13 11:59 PM


Law 267.4 is The Law & History Foundation Seminar for the Jurisprudence & Social Policy Graduate Program at Berkeley Law. It is a reading and discussion seminar open to all JSP graduate students, Berkeley Law JD, LLM, and JSD students, and graduate students from other campus programs and other Bay Area institutions. This is a shared course with History and Critical Theory and students from those departments should register in their department's course accordingly.

As in previous years, Law 267.4 will explore the central themes of American legal development, while also investigating the way legal history has matured as a field of study or “discipline.” But we are living in interesting times, in which the varied exploitations of colonialism, racism, and capitalism have become the subject of intense public examination and argument. So this semester I want to give explicit attention to the question of how history - as theory, as philosophy, as method, or simply as narrative - can help us understand the role that law has played, and plays, in the construction of our times. The course will concentrate on the legal history of the United States, but it will begin with a pointed glance at Early America, which will help to pose the question of how we should think about law as a phenomenon. In other words, what is “law”?

Considered as a field of study, legal history is as much history as law, and history is primarily a discipline of the book. For this reason I have chosen to make Law 267.4 a course that focuses on books. We will read a wide selection of the field’s best work, ranging from classics that have structured the field, stirred controversy, and inspired generations of scholars (like James Willard Hurst’s *Law and the Conditions of Freedom* and Morton Horwitz’s *Transformation of American Law, 1780-1860*), to the best work of the current generation of field leaders (like Laura Edwards’ *The People and their Peace* and Michael Willrich's *City of Courts*), to notable recent work (like William Novak's *New Democracy* and Ken Kersch's *Conservatives and the Constitution*). We will accumulate considerable knowledge of the substance of American legal history, but we will also give close critical attention to the very different ways in which scholars have chosen to write the history of American law, and the very different subjects about which they have considered it appropriate to write).

In the American law school curriculum, a legal history course is usually considered an "enrichment” or “perspective” elective because it does not offer instruction in doctrine or skills directly oriented to law practice. One might consider the absence of a clear instrumental function liberating. Law school is likely to be the last extended period in a budding lawyer’s life when they can explore general ideas about law, probe theories, think about large issues of justice or policy, and develop skills in research and analysis. In a legal history course, student and teacher are freed to enjoy the intellectual experience of reading and discussing intelligently-written material unconstrained by the necessity that it be directly “relevant” to, say, bar admission.

Still, lack of direct relevance may not seem very sensible to students with crowded schedules. Why read all this stuff if it has no direct instrumental take-away?

This is a sensible question, to which there are two answers. The first is the enrichment/perspective answer: to study the history of law is to study the culture and practice of one’s chosen profession. Historical knowledge supplies both “deep background” on what one is doing in the present, and also a fund of examples and parallels that help one understand why one is doing it. The second answer is that how one studies in a course like this can be of real practical benefit. Lawyers (particularly young lawyers) are required to assimilate large amounts of information efficiently in a short period of time, grasp the essentials, and analyze them. This course requires that you develop an ability to assimilate and analyze large quantities of information.

Our emphasis will be on weekly discussions of common readings. Concretely, each week we will all read a book, in whole or in part. We will all come to class prepared and willing to talk about what we have read. To prime discussion, each class participant will circulate (via bCourses) brief and informal impressions/questions about the week’s reading to every other participant and to the instructor.

For more detailed information on readings and assessment, see the course syllabus (on bCourses or obtainable from the instructor). As the syllabus indicates, reading preparation for the first class meeting is required.

Students enroll in this course for 3 units. JSP students are required to take an additional 1 unit in conjunction with this course through enrolling in Law 602. The additional unit of credit requires additional work within the course framework. To enroll in Law 602, JSP students must complete an Add Form by the add deadline and submit the completed form to the Registrar's Office.


Attendance at the first class is mandatory for all currently enrolled and waitlisted students; any currently enrolled or waitlisted students who are not present on the first day of class (without prior permission of the instructor) may be dropped without notice. The instructor can continue to take attendance throughout the add/drop period and anyone who moves off the waitlist into the class must continue to attend or have prior permission of the instructor in order not to risk being dropped without notice.


Requirements Satisfaction:

This class may fulfill Option 2 of the J.D. writing requirement with instructor approval. In order to qualify for Option 2, all students in the class must be writing a paper of 30 or more pages. Those students who wish to use this paper for the writing requirement must get instructor approval and submit their drafts for comment and revision.

Option 2 form needed:
https://www.law.berkeley.edu/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/Writing_Requirement_2017.pdf


Submit teaching evaluations for this course between 14-NOV-22 and 02-DEC-22

Exam Notes: (P) Final paper  
Course Category: Jurisprudence and Social Policy (JSP)
This course is listed in the following sub-categories:
Race and Law
Social Justice and Public Interest

If you are the instructor or their FSU, you may add a file like a syllabus or a first assignment to this page.

Readers:
No reader.

Books:
Required Books are in blue

  • Birthright Citizens: A History of Race and Rights in Antebellum America
    Martha S. Jones
    Edition: 2018
    Publisher: Cambridge University Press
    ISBN: 9781316604724
    e-Book Available: Yes
    e-Book procurement note: https://www.amazon.com/Birthright-Citizens-History-Antebellum-America/dp/1316604721
    Copyright Date: To Be Determined
    Price: $27.99
    Price Source: user provided
  • Border Law: The First Seminole War and American Nationhood
    Deborah A. Rosen
    Edition: 2015
    Publisher: Harvard University Press
    ISBN: 9780674967618
    e-Book Available: Yes
    e-Book procurement note: https://www.amazon.com/Border-Law-Seminole-American-Nationhood/dp/0674967615
    Copyright Date: To Be Determined
    Price: 51.00
    Price Source: user provided
  • City of Courts: Socializing Justice in Progressive Era Chicago
    Michael Willrich
    Edition: 2003
    Publisher: Cambridge University Press
    ISBN: 9780521794039
    e-Book Available: No
    Copyright Date: To Be Determined
    Price: 26.24
    Price Source: user provided
  • Conservatives and the Constitution: Imagining Constitutional Restoration in the Heyday of American Liberalism
    Ken I. Kersch
    Edition: 2019
    Publisher: Cambridge University Press
    ISBN: 9780521139809
    e-Book Available: Yes
    e-Book procurement note: https://www.amazon.com/Conservatives-Constitution-Constitutional-Restoration-Liberalism/dp/0521139805
    Copyright Date: To Be Determined
    Price: 34.99
    Price Source: user provided
  • Covered with Night: A Story of Murder and Indigenous Justice in Early America
    Nicole Eustace
    Edition: 2021
    Publisher: Liverlight
    ISBN: 9781631495878
    e-Book Available: Yes
    e-Book procurement note: https://www.amazon.com/Covered-Night-Indigenous-Justice-America/dp/1631495879
    Copyright Date: To Be Determined
    Price: 20.00
    Price Source: user provided
  • From Bondage to Contract: Wage Labor, Marriage, and the Market in the Age of Slave Emancipation
    Amy Dru Stanley
    Edition: 1998
    Publisher: Cambridge University Press
    ISBN: 9780521635264
    e-Book Available: Yes
    e-Book procurement note: https://www.amazon.com/Bondage-Contract-Marriage-Market-Emancipation/dp/0521635268
    Copyright Date: To Be Determined
    Price: 29.99
    Price Source: user provided
  • Law and the Conditions of Freedom in the Nineteenth Century United States
    James Willard Hurst
    Edition: 1956
    Publisher: University of Wisconsin Press
    ISBN: 9780299013639
    e-Book Available: Yes
    e-Book procurement note: https://www.amazon.com/Conditions-Freedom-Nineteenth-Century-United-States/dp/0299013634
    Copyright Date: To Be Determined
    Price: 18.95
    Price Source: user provided
  • New Democracy: The Creation of the Modern American State
    William J. Novak
    Edition: 2022
    Publisher: Harvard University Press
    ISBN: 9780674260443
    e-Book Available: No
    Copyright Date: To Be Determined
    Price: 45.00
    Price Source: user provided
  • Representing the Race: The Creation of the Civil Rights Lawyer
    Kenneth W. Mack
    Edition: 2012
    Publisher: Harvard University Press
    ISBN: 9780674046870
    e-Book Available: Yes
    e-Book procurement note: https://www.amazon.com/Representing-Race-Creation-Rights-Lawyer/dp/0674046870
    Copyright Date: To Be Determined
    Price: 20.40
    Price Source: user provided
  • Scenes of Subjection: Terror, Slavery, and Self-Making in Nineteenth-Century America
    Saidiya V. Hartman
    Edition: 1997
    Publisher: Oxford University Press
    ISBN: 9780195089844
    e-Book Available: No
    Copyright Date: To Be Determined
    Price: 31.78
    Price Source: user provided
  • The Partisan Republic: Democracy, Exclusion, and the Fall of the Founders' Constitution, 1780s-1830s
    Gerald Leonard, Saul Cornell
    Edition: 2019
    Publisher: Cambridge University Press
    ISBN: 9781107663893
    e-Book Available: Yes
    e-Book procurement note: https://www.cambridge.org/ve/academic/subjects/history/early-republic-and-antebellum-history/partisan-republic-democracy-exclusion-and-fall-founders-constitution-1780s1830s?format=AR
    Copyright Date: To Be Determined
    Price: 28.99
    Price Source: user provided
  • The People and their Peace: Legal Culture and the Transformation of Inequality in the Post-Revolutionary South
    Laura F. Edwards
    Edition: 2009
    Publisher: University of North Carolina Press
    ISBN: 9780807859322
    e-Book Available: Yes
    e-Book procurement note: https://www.vitalsource.com/products/the-people-and-their-peace-legal-culture-and-the-edwards-laura-f-v9781469619859
    Copyright Date: To Be Determined
    Price: 28.52
    Price Source: user provided
  • The Transformation of American Law, 1780-1860
    Morton J. Horwitz
    Edition: 1977
    Publisher: Harvard University Press
    ISBN: 9780674903715
    e-Book Available: No
    Copyright Date: To Be Determined
    Price: 38.50
    Price Source: user provided

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