In this course we will examine the theory and philosophy of law. This study dates to the beginning of modern civilization when humans first tried to understand the concepts of justice, liberty, fairness, equality, and the meaning of the rule of law itself. Ancient philosophers like Aristotle and Plato grappled with these concepts and religious figures and movements like Jesus, Mohammed, Aquinas, Buddha and the Talmud, among others, set out God centered explanations that sometimes are characterized as “natural law.” During the enlightenment, thinkers began to develop more rules-based theories that became known as positivism. Later, some modern thinkers began to espouse theories that sought to define terms such as “law” and ”due process.” Debate is ongoing between those who seek to define a legal system without resort to the morality of its laws and those who believe that ethics cannot be divorced from any reasonable analysis of law. Some thinkers believe that any analysis of a legal system cannot be viable unless it its seen through the prism of the society’s racism, sexism or other historical discriminatory practices. In this course, we will survey readings that set forth these various theories of law and more.
|T 4:00-5:50 PM||Klein 1B|
You may not register for this course if you are enrolled in or have already taken the following:
- LAW 0850 (Jurisprudence)