551.01 Civil Rights Enforcement Colloquium

This two-credit colloquium is designed to engage students on questions concerning the enforcement of civil rights (broadly defined) in America. Whereas most law school classes focus on the substance of such rights, this class will examine how civil rights are conceived and enforced – by individual rights-holders, by movement lawyers, or by governments. The colloquium will feature workshop-style presentations of works by scholars working in diverse fields, including civil rights, legal history, federal courts, and state and local government; as well as presentations by advocates involved in the work of civil rights enforcement. Students will be expected to engage with the speaker and with each other in discussion. Faculty interested in these topics also will be invited to attend and participate in the discussions.

Students have two options for completing the requirements of the course:  1) short (5-10 page) papers in response to at least six of the works presented, due in advance of the presentation; or 2) a longer research paper (roughly 30 pages) dealing with a topic of their choice related to the themes of the class.  Students who take the latter option could use the colloquium to satisfy the upper-level writing requirement. Contributions to class discussions will also be a component of the course grade.

Special Notes:


Enrollment Pre-/Co- Requisite Information

Constitutional Law. Prior or concurrent enrollment in federal courts, civil rights litigation, or employment discrimination is recommended.

Spring 2022

Course Number Course Credits Evaluation Method Instructor
Course Credits
Reflective Writing
Research paper option, 30 pages
Class participation
Darrell A. H. Miller, Margaret H. Lemos
Sakai site: https://sakai.duke.edu/portal/site/LAW-551-01-Sp22
Email list: LAW-551-01-Sp22@sakai.duke.edu
Degree Requirements
Course Requirements - JD
Course Requirements - Public Interest
Course Areas of Practice
Course Areas of Practice