566B Corporation and International Law

From politics to popular culture, the corporation has become one of the most critical economic, political, and cultural institutions of the modern era.  It has also been one of the most controversial.  Are corporations people, societies, or even governments? Do they have rights? If so, what are their civic, social, ethical, and political responsibilities? If such questions are vexing within municipal and national contexts, they have been downright confounding for international legal regimes.  Corporations have a global footprint and influence on our conceptions of sovereignty and governance, the functioning of international markets, the nature of interstate relations, wealth distribution, international development, and, at a basic level, the lives of people around the world. Yet modern international law has generally been understood to apply almost exclusively to states and to touch only lightly on corporate institutions, with profound consequences for everything from human rights to the global environment. This course will address these questions and many others, both through our own readings and discussions, as well as frequent guest speakers, panels, and workshops, in conjunction with a year-long Mellon Foundation funded Sawyer Seminar.

Course Areas of Practice
Course Type
Seminar
Learning Outcomes
Knowledge and understanding of substantive and procedural law
Legal analysis and reasoning, legal research, problem-solving, and written and oral communication in the legal context
2018
Spring 2018
Course Number Course Credits Evaluation Method Instructor Meeting Day/Times Room

566B.01 3
  • Reflection Papers
  • Final paper (10+ pages in length)
  • Class participation
Rachel Brewster F 11:45-1:35 PM 4000

From politics to popular culture, the corporation has become one of the most critical economic, political, and cultural institutions of the modern era.  It has also been one of the most controversial.  Are corporations people, societies, or even governments? Do they have rights? If so, what are their civic, social, ethical, and political responsibilities? If such questions are vexing within municipal and national contexts, they have been downright confounding for international legal regimes.  Corporations have a global footprint and influence on our conceptions of sovereignty and governance, the functioning of international markets, the nature of interstate relations, wealth distribution, international development, and, at a basic level, the lives of people around the world. Yet modern international law has generally been understood to apply almost exclusively to states and to touch only lightly on corporate institutions, with profound consequences for everything from human rights to the global environment. This course will address these questions and many others, both through our own readings and discussions, as well as frequent guest speakers, panels, and workshops, in conjunction with a year-long Mellon Foundation funded Sawyer Seminar.

Grading Basis: Graded

Pre/Co-requisites
None
Enrollment Restrictions
JD/LLM students only

*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.