The Constitution, Civil War, and Reconstruction

Course Information

Registration Information

Meeting Times

Day Time Location
TUE, THU 2:15 - 3:30 pm TNH 2.124

Evaluation Method

Type Date Time Location
Final May 9, 2022


Same as LAW 379M, The Constitution, Civil War, and Reconstruction.

This course will focus quite intensively on some of the central issues surrounding Civil War and then Reconstruction.  They include (but will not be limited to) secession; presidential emergency powers (including the power to emancipate slaves); whether Jefferson Davis and Robert E. Lee (among many others) committed "treason" and, if so, whether they should have been tried (ane executed?); the allocation of decisionmaking power as to "reconstruction" (i.e., president v. Congress); grounds for impeaching Andrew Johnson; the provenance of, especially, the 14th Amendment; and early decisions interpreting the "Reconstruction Amendments."   Although some cases will be assigned, we will also be reading articles and books relevant to these topics.  Each student will be required to write two response essays (of 12-1500 words) to  given weeks' reading of your choice, which shall count for half of the final grade.  The other half will be based on a two-hour final examination.  I will feel free to take class participation into account for anyone at the cusp between two grades.