556 Second Amendment: History, Theory, and Practice

Recent Supreme Court decisions have ushered in a new era of Second Amendment theory, litigation, and politics. Current events keep issues of firearms, gun violence, gun safety, and self-defense constantly in the news. This seminar will explore the Second Amendment and other aspects of federal and state firearms law. Students will be introduced to the historical and public policy materials surrounding the Second Amendment, the regulatory environment concerning firearms, and the political and legal issues pertaining to firearm rights-enforcement and policy design. Evaluation for the seminar will be based on in-class participation and a choice between six short reaction papers or one thirty-page paper.

Course Areas of Practice
Degree Requirements
Course Type
  • Seminar
Learning Outcomes
  • Knowledge and understanding of substantive and procedural law

Sample Syllabi

Fall 2022

2022
Course Number Course Credits Evaluation Method Instructor Meeting Days/Times Room

556.01 2 Joseph Blocher Tu 8:55 AM-10:45 AM 4044

Recent Supreme Court decisions have ushered in a new era of Second Amendment theory, litigation, and politics. Current events keep issues of firearms, gun violence, gun safety, and self-defense constantly in the news. This seminar will explore the Second Amendment and other aspects of federal and state firearms law. Students will be introduced to the historical and public policy materials surrounding the Second Amendment, the regulatory environment concerning firearms, and the political and legal issues pertaining to firearm rights-enforcement and policy design. Evaluation for the seminar will be based on in-class participation and a choice between six short reaction papers or one thirty-page paper.

Pre/Co-requisites
None

Fall 2021

2021
Course Number Course Credits Evaluation Method Instructor Meeting Days/Times Room

556.01 2 Jake Charles Tu 10:30 AM-12:20 PM 4044

The Supreme Court's decisions in District of Columbia v. Heller and McDonald v. City of Chicago have ushered in a whole new era of Second Amendment theory, litigation, and politics. Current events keep issues of firearms, gun violence, gun safety, and self-defense constantly in the news. This seminar will explore the Second Amendment and the various state constitutional analogs historically, theoretically, and pragmatically. Students will be introduced to the historical and public policy materials surrounding the Second Amendment, the regulatory environment concerning firearms, and the political and legal issues pertaining to firearm rights-enforcement and policy design. Evaluation for the seminar will be based on in-class participation and a choice between six short reaction papers or one thirty-page paper.

Pre/Co-requisites
None

Fall 2020

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

556.01 2 Joseph Blocher, Jake Charles Tu 10:30 AM-12:20 PM

The Supreme Court's decisions in District of Columbia v. Heller and McDonald v. City of Chicago have ushered in a whole new era of Second Amendment theory, litigation, and politics. Current events keep issues of firearms, gun violence, gun safety, and self-defense constantly in the news. This seminar will explore the Second Amendment and the various state constitutional analogs historically, theoretically, and pragmatically. Students will be introduced to the historical and public policy materials surrounding the Second Amendment, the regulatory environment concerning firearms, and the political and legal issues pertaining to firearm rights-enforcement and policy design. Evaluation for the seminar will be based on eight short reaction papers and in-class participation.

Syllabus: 556.01.Fall2020-syllabus.pdf170.51 KB

Pre/Co-requisites
None

Spring 2020

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

556.01 2 Joseph Blocher, Jake Charles Tu 10:30AM - 12:20PM 3000

The Supreme Court's decisions in District of Columbia v. Heller and McDonald v. City of Chicago have ushered in a whole new era of Second Amendment theory, litigation, and politics. Current events keep issues of firearms, gun violence, gun safety, and self-defense constantly in the news. This seminar will explore the Second Amendment and the various state constitutional analogs historically, theoretically, and pragmatically. Students will be introduced to the historical and public policy materials surrounding the Second Amendment, the regulatory environment concerning firearms, and the political and legal issues pertaining to firearm rights-enforcement and policy design. Evaluation for the seminar will be based on eight short reaction papers and in-class participation.

Pre/Co-requisites
None

Spring 2019

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

556.01 2 Joseph Blocher Th 8:55-10:45 AM 4044

The Supreme Court's decisions in District of Columbia v. Heller and McDonald v. City of Chicago have ushered in a whole new era of Second Amendment theory, litigation, and politics. Current events keep issues of firearms, gun violence, gun safety, and self-defense constantly in the news. This seminar will explore the Second Amendment and the various state constitutional analogs historically, theoretically, and pragmatically. Students will be introduced to the historical and public policy materials surrounding the Second Amendment, the regulatory environment concerning firearms, and the political and legal issues pertaining to firearm rights-enforcement and policy design. Evaluation for the seminar will be based on eight short reaction papers and in-class participation.

Pre/Co-requisites
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.