legal history


patters
Hi,

I'm planning on doing a LLM in the US (2008-09). I'm a doctoral candidate at the Univ of Geneva and my thesis has to do with legal history.

I was wondering what suggestions you folks might have regarding US universities with good legal history classes. I'm interested not so much in a LLM in legal history per se (and as far as i know, there's only 1 in the US anyhow) but rather a good LLM program with, on top of that, a couple of interesting legal history classes.

So far my picks are:
Viriginia (UVA)
Columbia

Both have joint law and history programs which makes them credible in the field.

+ Yale, simply cos it has such a supremely academic focus and we all know you don't become a corporate lawyer atfer years of dabbling in ancient legal sources.


Essentially, I'd like to hear some suggestions from people who are either in my position, or have gone through this already. What should I take into consideration? What things should I value highest? Is focusing too much on an academic carrer a mistake? (I admit that I'd like to pursue an academic career in the US after my LLM/doctorate; that's why I want to do the LLM in the US in the first place).

I've read a whole bunch about Harvard and the likes in this forum, but it seems to me most of the people going to these places are doing it in order to increase their future income (which is fine and dandy, it's just not what I have in mind:).


P.S. On a side note however, does anyone here know whether holders of a LLM from one state can then go on to sit the bar exam in another state? i.e. NY, CA or Conn? (AFAIK those are the only three states that validate LLM degrees at all?).

Cheers, Pat
Hi,

I'm planning on doing a LLM in the US (2008-09). I'm a doctoral candidate at the Univ of Geneva and my thesis has to do with legal history.

I was wondering what suggestions you folks might have regarding US universities with good legal history classes. I'm interested not so much in a LLM in legal history per se (and as far as i know, there's only 1 in the US anyhow) but rather a good LLM program with, on top of that, a couple of interesting legal history classes.

So far my picks are:
Viriginia (UVA)
Columbia

Both have joint law and history programs which makes them credible in the field.

+ Yale, simply cos it has such a supremely academic focus and we all know you don't become a corporate lawyer atfer years of dabbling in ancient legal sources.


Essentially, I'd like to hear some suggestions from people who are either in my position, or have gone through this already. What should I take into consideration? What things should I value highest? Is focusing too much on an academic carrer a mistake? (I admit that I'd like to pursue an academic career in the US after my LLM/doctorate; that's why I want to do the LLM in the US in the first place).

I've read a whole bunch about Harvard and the likes in this forum, but it seems to me most of the people going to these places are doing it in order to increase their future income (which is fine and dandy, it's just not what I have in mind:).


P.S. On a side note however, does anyone here know whether holders of a LLM from one state can then go on to sit the bar exam in another state? i.e. NY, CA or Conn? (AFAIK those are the only three states that validate LLM degrees at all?).

Cheers, Pat
quote
patters
OK, i'll reply to my own post. How cool is that;)

In fact I was just reading another thread and I had another question to ask.
Is it possible to combine an assitantship with LLM studies? Has anyone heard of such a situation?

Pat
OK, i'll reply to my own post. How cool is that;)

In fact I was just reading another thread and I had another question to ask.
Is it possible to combine an assitantship with LLM studies? Has anyone heard of such a situation?

Pat
quote
tmalmine
Although Harvard program has many students oriented towards commercial-law subjects, HLS remains extremely strong on legal history. M. Horwitz is, of course, the grand old man of American legal history. HLS also has Duncan and David Kennedy, who both have written on critical legal history. It even seems that Harvard is trying to surpass Yale on this field, recruiting several legal historians in a couple of years (Bruce Mann, for instance, and making an offer to Michael Klarman).

You should definitely keep Harvard in mind.

Columbia is strong, too, and may be getting even stronger (rumor has it that James Whitman of Yale is making a lateral move there).

Chicago has several great legal historians, although they lost Hamburger for Harvard.

Also bear in mind that history departments often have great legal historians. Anders Winroth, for example, is one of the rising stars in history of mediaeval canon law, and he teaches at Yale.
Although Harvard program has many students oriented towards commercial-law subjects, HLS remains extremely strong on legal history. M. Horwitz is, of course, the grand old man of American legal history. HLS also has Duncan and David Kennedy, who both have written on critical legal history. It even seems that Harvard is trying to surpass Yale on this field, recruiting several legal historians in a couple of years (Bruce Mann, for instance, and making an offer to Michael Klarman).

You should definitely keep Harvard in mind.

Columbia is strong, too, and may be getting even stronger (rumor has it that James Whitman of Yale is making a lateral move there).

Chicago has several great legal historians, although they lost Hamburger for Harvard.

Also bear in mind that history departments often have great legal historians. Anders Winroth, for example, is one of the rising stars in history of mediaeval canon law, and he teaches at Yale.
quote
roscoe
I can only subscribe to what Toni said (unlike me he is really an expert on the legal history landscape in the US, so I strongly encourage you to trust his expertise). Harvard indeed has a strong orientation towards legal history -- but then, to what it hasn't? And that's exactly my point: If I were you I'd consider the overall picture of the school instead of the (hard-to-evaluate) reputation of the individual legal history scholar ('hey, I give you two Duncan Kennedys for one Whitman...'). In other words: I have the feeling that your main point is that you want a solid foundation for an academic career (like I did myself, by the way) and you're not going for the name for big-law-firm-bucks (just like I don't). So if I were you I'd go for the school that is the best playground for stunning and broad (!) intellectual adventure...and that means inevitably Ivy League, I'm afraid. Whether you go for YLS or HLS is, then, a different question but you should apply for both (-- and then not be out of your mind and decline Harvard for Yale as did an infamous member of this blog whose name I just forgot...:-))

all the best to you. nice that you are interested in legal history (too).
I can only subscribe to what Toni said (unlike me he is really an expert on the legal history landscape in the US, so I strongly encourage you to trust his expertise). Harvard indeed has a strong orientation towards legal history -- but then, to what it hasn't? And that's exactly my point: If I were you I'd consider the overall picture of the school instead of the (hard-to-evaluate) reputation of the individual legal history scholar ('hey, I give you two Duncan Kennedys for one Whitman...'). In other words: I have the feeling that your main point is that you want a solid foundation for an academic career (like I did myself, by the way) and you're not going for the name for big-law-firm-bucks (just like I don't). So if I were you I'd go for the school that is the best playground for stunning and broad (!) intellectual adventure...and that means inevitably Ivy League, I'm afraid. Whether you go for YLS or HLS is, then, a different question but you should apply for both (-- and then not be out of your mind and decline Harvard for Yale as did an infamous member of this blog whose name I just forgot...:-))

all the best to you. nice that you are interested in legal history (too).

quote
tmalmine
To add one point: take a look at Michigan, which has many great legal historians at its faculty (Brian Simpson, Matthias Reimann, Ian Miller, and Bruce Frier, to name a few).

Larry Friedman, Amalie Kessler, and Tom Gray make Stanford a good choice, too, although its program may not be the best one for legal historians.
To add one point: take a look at Michigan, which has many great legal historians at its faculty (Brian Simpson, Matthias Reimann, Ian Miller, and Bruce Frier, to name a few).

Larry Friedman, Amalie Kessler, and Tom Gray make Stanford a good choice, too, although its program may not be the best one for legal historians.
quote
gar33
Hi

I love legal history too, tough I'm more into legal theory, political philosophy and L&E. I am doing the llm at Harvard and i am surprised about what you said. I do not wish to "market" my school, but you're clearly misinformed. First, you must have heard about Mort Horwitz who wrote one of the most extraordinary books (in fact a couple) in American legal history: The Tranformation of American Law (especially vol. 2). Second, Duncan Kennedy's unpublished piece (see his website) "The Rise and Fall of Classical Legal Thought", in a addition to the relevant portions of "Form and Substance in Private Law Adjudication, is among the most influencial pieces in american legal hisoriography (it literally "invented" the field of "history of legal thought", as soimething different from history of law or oflegal theory/ideas). Third, Carlie Donohue is the most prominent legal historian in pre-17th century anglo-american legal history. You also have David Kennedy, Terry Fischer, etc.

If you believe that legal realism, the great specificity of American legal History (in Europe the realist "revolution" was rather weak...), is relevant for your project, Harvard can give you a lot.
Hi

I love legal history too, tough I'm more into legal theory, political philosophy and L&E. I am doing the llm at Harvard and i am surprised about what you said. I do not wish to "market" my school, but you're clearly misinformed. First, you must have heard about Mort Horwitz who wrote one of the most extraordinary books (in fact a couple) in American legal history: The Tranformation of American Law (especially vol. 2). Second, Duncan Kennedy's unpublished piece (see his website) "The Rise and Fall of Classical Legal Thought", in a addition to the relevant portions of "Form and Substance in Private Law Adjudication, is among the most influencial pieces in american legal hisoriography (it literally "invented" the field of "history of legal thought", as soimething different from history of law or oflegal theory/ideas). Third, Carlie Donohue is the most prominent legal historian in pre-17th century anglo-american legal history. You also have David Kennedy, Terry Fischer, etc.

If you believe that legal realism, the great specificity of American legal History (in Europe the realist "revolution" was rather weak...), is relevant for your project, Harvard can give you a lot.
quote

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