History | Famous American Court Trials
A300 | 12266 | Taysom
Court trials and Supreme Court decisions have been the ultimate
means of resolving disputes in American society from Colonial times
to the present. Many of the great turning points in the nation’s
history have occurred in courtrooms. In this class, we will study
of few of these famous trials and Supreme Court decisions from the
Salem Witch Trials of 1692 to the Roe v. Wade decision three hundred
years later in 1973.
We will ask a lot of questions. What was a “crime” in the context
of the history in which the crime was committed? Can a crime be
blamed on the supernatural? What is the real meaning of free speech
and what exactly does free speech cover? What is the meaning of free
exercise of religion? Is American law really color blind? The
questions are endless, and the answers lead only to other questions.
But one thing is sure: American history has affected—and been
affected by—American court trials. Join us as we try to analyze some
of the trials that have shed some light on the law and on history.