Legal History: American Legal Education

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Spring 2013 Seminar
Meets: T 5:00pm - 7:00pm in WCC Room 3009
2 classroom credits

This seminar is designed for students who are genuinely interested in what has happened to them at law school and who would like to examine carefully the nature of their legal education. It is also a practical introduction to the many different careers available in legal education. We will commence with the English and Continental origins of legal scholarship and teaching, examine the development of formal legal education in America from the founding of the Litchfield and Harvard Law Schools to the rise of Legal Realism, and conclude with the pressing controversies facing America's law schools today. Among the topics covered will be the relationship between formal legal education and the practicing bar, the changing composition of the faculty and the student body, the early pedagogical controversies, the different methods and ends of modern legal instruction, and the role played by law schools in fundamental disputes about jurisprudence, political ideology, economics, and social reform. A research paper will be required rather than a final examination. Enrollment is limited to fifteen.

Subject Areas: Legal History .