Capital Punishment

Course Information

Registration Information

Meeting Times

Day Time Location
TUE 3:30 - 5:20 pm TNH 2.123

Evaluation Method

Type Date Time Location
Final exam December 20, 2007 8:30 am A-Z in 2.123


This small course taught in seminar style will examine some general jurisprudential and moral issues related to the American system of capital punishment. The course will focus primarily on the development of the law governing capital punishment in the United States since 1970. Some of the main themes include: the legal structure of the Supreme Court's post-1970 death penalty jurisprudence (i.e., the role of aggravating and mitigating circumstances in the sentencing decision), the scope of available appellate and post-conviction review in capital cases, the inadequate defense representation too often afforded indigent capital defendants, and the persistent influence of racial discrimination in the selection of defendants against whom the death penalty will be sought. The course will have a maximum of 25 students, 10-12 of whom will participate in the Capital Punishment Clinic. The course will be graded on a letter-grade basis for all students. The grade will be based on a final exam.