R1B: Immigration and Asylum, Alan Kluegel, 4 units, Area N/A
Focusing first on refugees who come to the U.S. seeking asylum, we will learn about the legal framework governing asylum-seekers, and the controversies concerning the standard they must meet to be granted asylum. We will also focus on the legal process they must navigate, challenges to the existing system, and possibilities for reform. Next, we will turn to a second group: undocumented youth, particularly undocumented students, and we will examine the strategies they have used in advocating for legal protection. We will focus on state and federal laws, the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, and recent changes to enforcement priorities. Throughout this course, we will explore the challenges immigrants face in navigating the legal system, questions of membership and belonging, and the politics surrounding our immigration laws. At the end of the
semester, students will have had opportunities to construct arguments about (1) the goals and the reality of our asylum policy, and (2) how best to assess the merits of various approaches to undocumented immigration.
NOTE: R1B courses must be taken for a letter grade.
**This course is lower division and will not count towards the major.**
39D: Current Political & Moral Conflicts & the Constitution Frosh/Soph Seminar, Pomerantz, 2 units, Area N/A (We plan to hold two sections of 39D Fa17.)
**This course is lower division and will not count towards the major.**
We will read Supreme Court cases, as well as political and legal commentary from across the political spectrum, and consider not only the opinions of the Justices, but also why they hold those opinions. We will seek to discover the way in which courts use authority and craft law.
39I: Punishment in America Frosh/Soph Seminar, Kutz, 2 units, Area N/A
**This course is lower division and will not count towards the major.**
This seminar will look at the theory and modern practice of criminal punishment in the United States: we will read and discuss materials from philosophy, history, law, anthropology, and sociology to discuss under what conditions state punishment could be justified, and how the American modern practice of mass incarceration does or does not meet those conditions. Along with some classic philosophy and criminology readings, we will read Bryan Stevenson’s Just Mercy and Michelle Alexander’s The New Jim Crow. The seminar will include a trip to San Quentin state prison and a court observation (the latter is self-guided). The requirements will consist of weekly readings and short, ungraded, written reactions, as well as two 5-6 page graded papers. You should be prepared to do 50-75 pages of reading per week (perhaps a bit more if the reading is not dense), and you will be expected to contribute on the basis of that reading to class discussion during every session.
100: Foundations of Legal Studies, Marshall, 4 units, Core (H, SS)
This is a liberal arts course designed to introduce students to the foundational frameworks and cross-disciplinary perspectives from humanities and social sciences that distinguish legal studies as a scholarly field. It provides a comparative and historical intro to forms, ideas, institutions, and systems of law and sociological ordering. It highlights basic theoretical problems and scholarly methods for understanding questions of law and justice.
103: Theories of Law & Society, Tomlins, 4 units, Core (H, SS) or Area II
Surveys leading attempts to construct social theories of law and to use legal materials for systematic social theorizing, during the period from the mid-eighteenth century to the early twentieth century. The course considers major discussions of such themes as the relationships between law, politics, society and economy; the connection between historical change and legal change; the role of law in the processes of social integration and social discipline; and the distinctive elements of legal ordering in the modern west.
LS 104AC: Youth, Justice & Culture, Morrill, 4 units, Area I or II
The seminar challenges adult-centered representations of urban youth of different ethnicities, their problems, and the supposed solutions to those problems. It departs from the conceptualizations and methods used to study youth in mainstream criminology and developmental psychology. The seminar builds an alternative, youth-centered perspective, exploring what it means to put youth perspectives at the center of socio-legal inquiry. As a socio-legal endeavor, the seminar studies law as it is lived, shaped, and encountered by urban youth in their everyday lives. It illuminates the conceptual frames, methodological tools, and substantive findings that come to the front when the focus is on how youth make sense of their own lives, assert their own views of justice and law, and act on one another. Particular attention is given to youth conflict, peer relations, identity building within and across ethnic groups, claims on space and territory, the salience of law and rights, and adaptations to adult authorities and practices in the contexts of urban neighborhoods and public schools.
107: Theories of Justice, Song, 4 units, Area I, Core (H) or Area II or III or IV
This course explores three fundamental questions about the idea of a just society and the place of the values of liberty and equality in such a society: (1)Which liberties must a just society protect? Liberty of expression? Sexual liberty? Economic liberty? Political liberty? (2) What sorts of equality should a just society ensure? Equality of opportunity? Of economic outcome? Political equality? Equality for different religious and cultural groups? (3)Can a society ensure both liberty and equality? Or are these opposing political values? We will approach these questions by examining answers to them provided by three contemporary theories of justice: utilitarianism, libertarianism, and egalitarian liberalism. To assess the strengths and weaknesses of these theories, we will discuss their implications for some topics of ongoing political controversy that exemplify our three fundamental questions about liberty and equality: the enforcement of sexual morality, financing schools and elections, regulating labor markets, affirmative action, and abortion. We will conclude by examining issues of global justice and human rights.
109: Aims & Limits of Criminal Law, Perry, 4 units, Area I
This course focuses on the analysis of the capacity of criminal law to fulfill its aims. What are the aims of criminal Law? How are they assigned relative priority? What principles can be identified for evaluating the effort to control disapproved activities through criminal law?
140: Property & Liberty, Brown, 4 units, Area II or III
The course will explore the relation between property law and limits of liberty in different cultures and at different times. The course will cover theories of property law, slavery, the clash between aboriginal and European ideas of property, gender roles and property rights, common property systems, zoning, regulatory takings, and property on the internet. Readings will include legal theorists, court cases, and historical case studies.
145: Law & Economics I, Prof. Bruno Salama, 4 units, Core (SS) or Area III
This course uses the concepts and tools of economics to analyze problems in law, focusing on contracts, property, torts, and legal process. Students will be expected to apply the analysis to broad array of legal issues. It is highly recommended that students have taken at least Econ 1 before enrolling in 145.
151: Law, Self & Society, Dan-Cohen, 3 units, Area II
Contemporary moral and political philosophy has been increasingly interested in how conceptions of the self-relate to various aspects of our social and political life. These issues have an important bearing on legal theory as well. Law is shaped by certain implicit assumptions about the nature of individuals and collectivities, while it also actively participates in forming the identities of persons and in structuring collective entities such as families, corporations, and municipalities. This course will explore some theoretical approaches to this reciprocal relationship between law and the different social actors that it governs.
158: Law & Development, O’Connell, 4 units, Area III or IV
Focusing on developing countries, this course considers the relationship between legal institutions and rules – including informal and traditional ones – and development – defined by different actors by economic growth, education, health, or a wide spectrum of freedoms. It examines efforts by national leaders, international organizations, foreign aid agencies, and NGOs to “reform” law to promote development, along with the resistance and unplanned consequences that often ensue.
161: Law in Chinese Society, Stern, 4 units, Area II
This course examines the legal system of China, from its cultural basis to the implications for modernization and China’s participation in the international community. Philosophy, drama, and art will be used to understand the culture and major historical periods which influenced China’s legal traditions and key concepts. The 20th century will be reviewed in some detail, including the Republic both on the mainland and on Taiwan, and the People’s Republic in both the Maoist and current eras, leading to examination of current legal practices in both Taiwan and mainland China.
163: Adolescence, Crime & Juvenile Justice, Zimring, 4 units, Area I
This course examines the premises, doctrine, and operational behavior of juvenile courts, particularly in relation to the commission of seriously anti-social acts by mid-adolescents. Topics include the history of theories of delinquency; the jurisprudence of delinquency; the incidence and severity of delinquency; police response to juvenile offenders; the processes of juvenile courts and youth corrections; and reforms or alternatives to the juvenile court system.
170: Crime & Criminal Justice, Perry, 4 units, Area I
This course examines the scope and causes of the crime problem in America, and the uses and limits of our criminal justice system in dealing with it. The class will look at recent trends in crime and at how our crime problem compares with that of other countries. Topics include the massive expansion of the American prison system in recent years and its effect on the crime rate, critical analyses of different theories of the causes of crime, strategies for preventing and controlling crime, death penalty, gun control, white-collar crime, and crime in the family.
181: Psychology & Law, Plaut, 4 units, Area II
This course will examine the implications of cognitive, social, and clinical psychology for legal theory, policies, and practices. The course will analyze the psychological aspects of intent, responsibility, deterrence, retribution, and morality. We will examine applications of psychology to evidence law (e.g. witness testimony, psychiatric diagnosis and prediction), procedure (e.g., trial conduct, jury selection), and topics in criminal, tort, and family law.
184: Sociology of Law, Edelman, 4 units, Core (SS) or Area IV
This introductory course explores major issues and debates in the sociology of law. Topics include theoretical perspectives on the relationship between law and society, theories of why people obey (and disobey) the law, the relationship between law and social norms, the “law in action” in litigation and dispute resolution, the roles of lawyers, judges, and juries in the legal system and in society, and the role of law in social change. The course will examine these issues from an empirical perspective.
190.1: Surveillance, Privacy & the Law, James Rule, 4 units, I or IV
This seminar will examine tensions surrounding efforts to observe, monitor, track and record personal information. Such tensions between privacy interests and those of surveillance will be understood as universal elements of social life, from intimate face-to-face interactions to government surveillance activities like those of the NSA. Of special interest will be the repercussions of such tensions in the realm of law—including law-enforcement, civil liberties, tort law, and privacy codes aimed at drawing the line between privacy “rights” and prerogatives of surveillance.
190.2: Law, Politics & Literature, Shapiro, 4 units, Area II or V
This course will examine some key issues of politics through the close reading of a number of literary works.
190.3: Law & Social Change: The Immigrant Rights Movement, Abrams, 4 units, Area IV or V
This course will explore the relationship between social movements and the law (ie, statutes, administrative regulations, judicial decisions, and policies and practices of enforcement, at both state and federal levels), focusing on the movement for immigrant rights led and populated by undocumented activists. We will examine that movement as it has emerged both nationally and in the state of Arizona. We will ask how legal action has spurred the formation of a social movement, and how that movement has sought to influence, resist, and transform the law. We will study the ways in which the movement in Arizona has faced a distinctive legal landscape: state legislation and state and local enforcement tactics have made the state almost uniquely hostile for immigrants, yet they has also enabled activists to use the federal courts and the Constitution as vehicles for change. We will also examine the ways in which the movement in Arizona has coalesced with a national movement for immigrant rights, as it has sought legislative and administrative goals: a path to legalization for DREAMers (undocumented youth), comprehensive immigration reform, and relief from deportations. We will finally consider how major changes in the leadership and direction of federal institutions with plenary power over immigration have demanded conceptual and tactical response from this movement, analyzing the transition between Obama and Trump administrations. The course will seek to answer two primary questions about the undocumented activists who are now at the center of this movement: first, how movement participants with no formal institutional role – and in this case, no formal legal status – have become confident and sophisticated legal claims-makers whose actions shape the law and its enforcement; and second, how those participants conceive law and legal institutions, and their own relation to them. The course will also be concerned with the role(s) of lawyers who collaborate with, assist, and work on behalf of the movement; we will consider how these roles may depart from conventional forms of legal representation.
190.4: Legal Theory Seminar, Dan-Cohen, 4 units, Area II or IV
In this seminar we’ll discuss a number of texts that cover a wide range of issues in the theory of law. Roughly speaking, they fall into two main categories. Some of the readings look at law from the outside, posing the question, what is law and what is the source of its authority? The answers proposed concern the distinction between natural law and positivism, and the relationship between law and morality. The other set of readings adopt an internal perspective, focusing primarily on theoretical and philosophical underpinnings of substantive legal issues. The aim is to identify salient ideas and values that shape legal discourse and inform legal policy.
H195A: Honors Seminar, Edelman, 4 units, Area N/A
Students contemplating an Honors thesis must enroll in the first half of the program with LS H195A in the Fall of their senior year, which is aimed specifically at preparing them for the task. The seminar will cover such important subjects as selecting a thesis topic that is both interesting and capable of investigation within the limits of a single semester, developing and implementing an effective research strategy, and completing the writing. UCB GPA 3.5 Legal Studies GPA 3.5 required.
During the following Spring semester, students who continue with the Honors Program (LS H195B) will complete a substantial research paper under the supervision of a faculty member.
To apply for the Honors Seminar LS H195A for Fall, please refer to the application info under ‘Research’ then ‘Honors Program’ on the Legal Studies website.