This is a course in the philosophy of law.  More specifically, it is about learning to think like a lawyer.  It focuses on the following questions:  What is the nature of law?  What are the salient features?  What is the relationship between law and morals?  How should judges (and lawyers) reason about cases and interpret statutes?  Do we have any moral obligation to obey the law?  How have answers to these questions changed through time? How have they affected legal education?  The course is not about moral issues concerning the content of law. 

Students are evaluated on a traditional, semester-end, essay examination.

Class Details

Meeting Days Time Location
Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday 9:10 - 10:00 am JON 5.206/207
Evaluation Method Date Time Alpha Range Room
Final 5/7/18 8:30 am A-Z

Additional Information

Course Type
Grading Method
Pass/Fail Allowed
Will use floating mean GPA if applicable


  • Billy Budd and Other Tales - Herman Melville
      Signet Classics , edition: Any
      ISBN: 9780451530813   (required)
  • The Social Contract - Jean-Jacques Rousseau
      Penguin Books for Philosophy , edition: Any
      ISBN: 9780140442014   (required)
  • The Ages of American Law: Second Edition - Grant Gilmore
      The Storrs Lecture Series , edition: Second
      ISBN: 9780300189919   (required)
  • Sales Store materials


Powers, William C Jr. Powers, William C Jr.