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LSJ 490 D: Special Topics in Comparative Legal Institutions

Meeting Time: 
TTh 8:30am - 10:20am
DEN 256
Joint Sections: 
LSJ 510 A, POL S 447 A
Rachel Cichowski

Syllabus Description:


Course Description:

This is an undergraduate senior seminar and can be applied to the course requirements for the following fields in the Political Science Department: comparative politics and international relations.  It also fulfills major requirements for the Law, Societies and Justice Department: seminar requirement and comparative legal institutions sub field.

This course adopts a global justice approach to examine and understand current policy questions.  Students are introduced to the concept of global justice through a discussion of three main types: justice as accountability, justice as fairness and justice as equality.  The course will apply these concepts to a series of international justice topics including mass atrocity and criminal law, global health rights, international trade, environmental justice, gender equality, refugees and migration.  Students will engage these topics as a dynamic process examining in greater detail a main institution of international justice, the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) and also the many actors characterizing each justice topic including civil society organizations, state officials, legal activists, prosecutors and judges.  The course will raise contemporary challenges in international justice, including the recent exit of countries from the International Criminal Court and questions regarding the ability of international justice institutions to handle issues of mass migration or environmental justice.  The topics will also highlight recent innovations such as the expansion in international justice to understand domestic violence as a human rights violation or rape as a form of torture. 

There are no exams in this course and assignments will demand active participation in discussion and significant reading, writing and research.  Students will be trained in using innovative new databases for international justice research and they will have the opportunity to work in task forces to create multimedia reports on international justice topics.  Students will also be required to write and present a final research paper.

Catalog Description: 
Focused, comparative examination of legal institutions.
GE Requirements: 
Individuals and Societies (I&S)
Last updated: 
August 2, 2019 - 9:06pm