After successfully completing this course, the student will:
- Have a basic knowledge of methods of legal reasoning and argumentation
- Have a basic knowledge of the methods of legal interpretation and of some scholarly views on them
- Be able to use elementary methods of the art of rhetoric in constructing and de-constructing legal arguments
- Be able to orientate themselves in various professional worlds of law, of either a national or transnational nature, by paying attention to how the various people who practice law use their professional language in order to shape and influence interaction
- Be aware of alternative (non-Western, non-White, non-male etc) methods of legal reasoning
- Be able to work together in small groups to achieve commonly-defined goals and to debate ideas
This course examines questions of law, legal thinking and of justice from a variety of perspectives. It requires students to take a critical perspective to law. We look at those who enact law - legal professionals such as judges, law-makers, law professors and others - and at those who are acted upon by law i.e. law's subjects. The course examines the how and who of the construction of legal knowledge (e.g. what constitutes proper evidence in law; how does a happening become a legal fact), of legal identities and of legal borders. How do these various actors use legal reasoning and argumentation and to what end? How does the system of law function to open up possibilities for justice and how does it work to close them down? Whose justice does law ultimately serve? We ask these questions in a general way and in the context of globalisation. How, for example, are today's forces of globalisation using, seeking and impacting upon how law functions? Finally, we consider what role there is for today's global lawyer; put differently, how we should be a global lawyer?
Type of instructions
This course will take the form of 2 hour seminars, which will be co-taught by both lecturers. In addition, students are required to participate in small group exercises, including off-campus work. Additional classes will be offered to provide support on essay writing and in preparation of the group exercise.
Type of exams
Final essay; weekly individual assignments; goup video exercise
A list of compulsory and recommended readings are provided class-by-class in the coursebook. The coursebook will be available via blackboard several weeks before the course starts.