339 Law and Literature

This course concentrates on possible relationships between law and literature. The major themes will be the depiction of law and lawyers in popular and highbrow fiction; the relationship between the interpretation of legal and literary texts; law in utopia and dystopia; crime, punishment and racial justice and the romantic conception of authorship. Fair warning: the course involves considerable reading – but almost all of it consists of works of fiction. For the final exam, which you will have 2 weeks to complete, you will be given a list of very broad essay topics brought up by the books we have read, and will write 2, 2000 word essays on the topics of your choice.

Course Areas of Practice
Degree Requirements
Course Requirements - JD
Course Requirements - LLM
Course Type
  • Lecture
Learning Outcomes
  • Legal analysis and reasoning, legal research, problem-solving, and written and oral communication in the legal context

Sample Syllabi

Fall 2020

2020
Course Number Course Credits Evaluation Method Instructor Meeting Days/Times Room

339.01 3 James Boyle M/W 4:00 PM-5:25 PM

This course concentrates on possible relationships between law and literature. The major themes will be the depiction of law and lawyers in popular and highbrow fiction; the relationship between the interpretation of legal and literary texts; law in utopia and dystopia; crime, punishment and racial justice and the romantic conception of authorship. Fair warning: the course involves considerable reading – but almost all of it consists of works of fiction. For the final exam, which you will have 2 weeks to complete, you will be given a list of very broad essay topics brought up by the books we have read, and will write 2, 2000 word essays on the topics of your choice.

Pre/Co-requisites
None
Enrollment Restrictions
None

Spring 2019

2019
Course Number Course Credits Evaluation Method Instructor Meeting Days/Times Room

339.01 3 James Boyle M/W 2:00-3:25 PM 4055

This course concentrates on possible relationships between law and literature. The major themes will be depiction of law and lawyers in popular and highbrow fiction; relationship between the interpretation of legal and literary texts; law in utopia and dystopia; crime and punishment; romantic conception of authorship in copyright, interpretation, and social theory. The course involves considerable reading, including works from some of the major academic debates in the ''law and literature movement'' and from cognate debates in legal interpretation.

Pre/Co-requisites
None
Enrollment Restrictions
None

Spring 2017

2017
Course Number Course Credits Evaluation Method Instructor Meeting Days/Times Room

339.01 3 James Boyle M/W M 2:00-3:20 PM/ W 1:45-3:05 PM 4000

This course concentrates on possible relationships between law and literature. The major themes will be depiction of law and lawyers in popular and highbrow fiction; relationship between the interpretation of legal and literary texts; law in utopia and dystopia; crime and punishment; romantic conception of authorship in copyright, interpretation, and social theory. The course involves considerable reading, including works from some of the major academic debates in the ''law and literature movement'' and from cognate debates in legal interpretation.

Syllabus: 339.01.Spring2017-syllabus.pdf297.2 KB

Pre/Co-requisites
None
Enrollment Restrictions
None

Spring 2016

2016
Course Number Course Credits Evaluation Method Instructor Meeting Days/Times Room

339.01 3 James Boyle TuTh 11:00-12:20 PM 3000

This course concentrates on possible relationships between law and literature. The major themes will be depiction of law and lawyers in popular and highbrow fiction; relationship between the interpretation of legal and literary texts; law in utopia and dystopia; crime and punishment; romantic conception of authorship in copyright, interpretation, and social theory. The course involves considerable reading, including works from some of the major academic debates in the ''law and literature movement'' and from cognate debates in legal interpretation.

Pre/Co-requisites
None
Enrollment Restrictions
None

*Please note that this information is for planning purposes only, and should not be relied upon for the schedule for a given semester. Faculty leaves and sabbaticals, as well as other curriculum considerations, will sometimes affect when a course may be offered.