Eighteenth-century English law and especially William Blackstone's Commentaries on the Laws of England form the basis of the American common and constitutional law systems. But for all the Supreme Court citations to the Commentaries, the later eighteenth century remains the dark age of English legal history. This seminar will work toward shedding some light on this extremely important but understudied period of legal development. The seminar will focus on Blackstone in the context of his time. We will look at the Commentaries as a description and outgrowth of English constitutional, property, commercial, and procedural law as well as use it as an example of the debates over legal theory. There are many opportunities to write publishable papers in this area, so some of the seminar will also be devoted to lessons on doing legal historical research. No computers are permitted in class.
|Wednesday||3:30 - 5:20 pm||JON 6.219|
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Kadens, Emily E