Writing 43: The Written Judicial Opinion

16X, 17X: 12

This course studies the structure, content, format, and organization of the written legal opinion, along with an introduction to judicial procedure and process. Students will analyze several historically and socially significant United States Supreme Court opinions in order to understand how and why they constitute "the law." Additional readings will contextualize the assigned written opinions. Other topics include how judges write their legal opinions, which factors judges consider when they write judicial opinions, and how the political and social norms and trends affect and influence judicial opinions. Students will learn the technical skills of judicial opinion writing and comprehend the structure and purpose of the American judicial system. This class is recommended for those interested in writing, law, and the American judicial system, and is especially appropriate for those students considering a career in law.

Prerequisite: Writing 5 or its equivalent (Writing 2-3 or Humanities 1). Dist: SOC. Sargent.