Law, Politics, & Society

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LPS 190: Senior Seminar

Fall 2016:

LPS 190: Senior Seminar in Legal Mobilization
How have social movement actors mobilized law for change? How have law and society scholars understood legal mobilization as an important part of our legal and political landscapes? This senior seminar will investigate historical moments of legal mobilization, and seek to understand impact and effectiveness, as well as the legitimating power of law, that we even seek it as movements.

Spring 2016:

LPS 190: Senior Seminar in Litigation
In this senior seminar, we will examine the historical roots of litigation in the United States, and trace its development into the contemporary period. Using a variety of methods and drawing on several disciplines, we'll come to understand the political, cultural and --yes--legal, uses of litigation in contemporary American life.

Fall 2015:

LPS 190: Senior Seminar in Law and Possibility of Justice
No description

Spring 2015:

See Fall 2013 Description.

Fall 2014:

LPS 190: Senior Seminar in Law, Politics, and Society: Narratives of Law in Our Lives
In this course, we will be exploring the narratives, stories, and myths that we create around, about, in, and through, law. Why do we have the debates we do? What role does law play in the lives of everyday people, and how do they construct their understanding of that role? How are stories about democracy, activism, restraint, and justice intertwined with our stories about law? Are there myths we refuse to engage, stories we refuse to tell? Are there stories that we find it difficult to hear? Our readings will be drawn from a very interdisciplinary perspective. We will read in the fields of political science, sociology, anthropology, cultural studies, and legal and constitutive sociolegal studies. We will read memoir, and we will read signs. Throughout the semester, we will evaluate these readings with an eye to understanding the assumptions and beliefs about law that underpin them, and an attempt to understand our own beliefs about law, and how those beliefs shape our relation to the legal field.

Fall 2013:

LPS 190: Senior Seminar
This course examines crime and criminalization as sites through which the broader work of governance takes place. Through readings and individual research projects, students will examine various forms of criminality (from drugs to terrorism) and the techniques of governance that have arisen to address them (from criminalization to legal regulation). We will likewise examine the broader effects of this crime-centered approach to governance, including, particularly, the impact on the criminal justice system and broader social issues such as poverty, racism and gender relations. Finally, we will consider alternatives to the practice of “governing through crime.”

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