Honors | How Law Matters (HON)
H204 | 11246 | Steve Conrad

TuTh 1:00-2:15pm

In this course we’ll sample a sundry variety of substantive topics
in the field of American legal history. Our chief aim will be to
develop a critical appreciation of how scholars use history to make
arguments about American legal culture. We’ll begin by working
through a short textbook that affords an introductory overview of
the history of American law, public and private. But then we’ll
proceed to consider a variety of essays, respectively by historians
whose values/politics/methodologies vary greatly, one from the
other. Typically our chief concern will be with argumentation
itself, argumentation as to how, and how much, law has mattered in
American history. The course will call for routine engaged
participation in classroom discussion. And there will be very short
writing assignments about every other week, and  a final paper, on
the order of five to seven pages in length. There will also be a
closed-book midterm exam. No student research will be required. A
tentative syllabus is available upon request; send an email to