By student blogger Moshe Zvi Marvit
On November 04, 2009, Professor Harry Reicher, Adjunct
Professor at University of Pennsylvania Law School and Scholar-in-Residence at
Touro Law School, presented “The Nazi Obsession with Legalizing the Holocaust”
to a packed room of students and faculty. Professor Reicher addressed up front
the inherent tensions of discussing the Holocaust and law, because the general
conception of the Holocaust is at odds with what most think of when one thinks
of the law. Where law is associated with justice, morality, due process, and
respect, the Holocaust is associated with brutality, injustice, dehumanization,
By Christopher Buccafusco
My recent article with John Bronsteen and Jonathan Masur, Happiness and Punishment, has recently appeared in the University of Chicago Law Review. Please email me if you’re interested in receiving a reprint.
In addition, an editorial-style version of the article has just appeared online in The Legal Workshop. Here’s the first paragraph from the article:
New findings in hedonic psychology have implications for punishment theory. Specifically, these findings suggest that criminals adapt surprisingly well to fines and even to incarceration, but that incarceration negatively affects post-prison life in ways that tend to be unadaptable. These results increase the difficulty of using adjustments in the size of a fine or the length of a prison sentence to tailor a punishment to fit a crime. Because such adjustments are our primary means of crafting proportional punishments, and because such proportionality is important to retributive and utilitarian theories of punishment, a problem with their effectiveness could necessitate a rethinking of penal assumptions.
By student blogger Orijit Ghoshal
On Tuesday, October 27, Professor William Birdthistle kicked off a series of lectures designed to give students a glimpse into the faculty’s academic scholarship with a lecture on Jones v. Harris Associates. In addition to writing an article to be published by the University of Illinois Law Review on the subject, Prof. Birdthistle served as counsel of record on two Briefs Of Amici Curiae Law Professors In Support of the Petitioners.
By student blogger Mark Berardi
The Sports and Entertainment Law
Society recruited Professor Christopher Schmidt of Chicago-Kent College of Law
to present the history and legal implications of drug testing in sports.
Professor Schmidt’s talk drew on a project he is currently working on entitled,
“Governing Baseball.” He is exploring the history of the relationship between
baseball and the government through four case studies: (1) The appointment of Judge Kenesaw Mountain Landis as the first
Commissioner of baseball in the wake of the Black Sox Scandal; (2) the
integration of baseball; (3) team relocations and the expansion of major league
baseball in the 1950s and 1960s; and (4) the introduction of drug testing in
the past decade. He argues that while organized baseball has generally prided
itself on its independence from government regulation, the game actually has a
long history of reliance on government, and, furthermore, government
involvement has generally benefited the game.
By student blogger Laura Elkayam
In September Professor Alison LaCroix, a legal historian and an assistant professor at the University of Chicago Law School, presented her recent article, “Temporal Imperialism”, which identifies and critiques the United States Supreme Court’s disoriented relationship with notions of time. Specifically, Professor LaCroix argues that despite its proclamations of institutional continuity, the Court in fact routinely engages in a kind of “temporal packaging” that indicates a more severed state of affairs.
Professor Ed Kraus was quoted at length in an article on the resources available to diabetic schoolchildren. From the article:
Although more schools have fewer full-time nurses while, experts say, there is an increasing number of children being diagnosed with both type 1 and type 2 diabetes, many schools are successfully adapting to the needs of these kids, which the federal Americans with Disabilities Act requires they do, says attorney Ed Kraus, an associate professor at Chicago Kent Law School who works with the American Diabetes Association (ADA). Yet, too many schools are still falling short, he says.
Read the article here.
By student blogger Moshe Marvit
Recently Professor Sheldon Nahmod presented a talk to the Chicago-Kent College of Law faculty about the Supreme Court’s recent decision of Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 129 S.Ct. 1937 (2009). Though the case is primarily a pleadings case involving §1983 pleading requirements after Twombly, the talk focused on the Court’s revisionist treatment of §1983 supervisory liability.
Professor Nahmod’s talk, entitled, “Consitutional Torts, Over-Deterrence and Supervisory Liability After Iqbal,” proceeded in three parts. First a primer on §1983 and Bivens actions was discussed, with particular attention paid to the purposes of §1983, the role of immunities, and the statutes so called “background of tort liability.” Next, Professor Nahmod discussed the role that deterrence, and perhaps over-deterrence, has played in the developing interpretation of the statute. Finally, a framework for understanding the different approaches that the Court has taken towards supervisory liability was provided, and an argument made for why the Court’s current approach in Iqbal is inconsistent with the statute’s purposes and prior precedent.
Professor William Birdthistle has recently posted his article Investment Indiscipline: A Behavioral Approach to Mutual Fund Jurisprudence on ssrn. It will be published in the Illinois Law Review. Here is the abstract:
Next Term, in Jones v. Harris, the Supreme Court will be called upon to resolve philosophical divergences on a massive, critical, yet academically slighted subject: the dysfunctional system through which almost one hundred million Americans attempt to save more than ten trillion dollars for their retirement. When this case was in the Seventh Circuit, two of the foremost theorists of law and economics, Chief Judge Frank Easterbrook and Judge Richard Posner, disagreed vociferously on competing analyses of the investment industry. The Supreme Court’s ruling will not only resolve the intricate fiduciary and doctrinal issues of this dispute but also have profound implications upon several major theoretical debates in contemporary American jurisprudence: the clash of classical versus behavioral economics; the judicial capacity to evaluate increasingly sophisticated econometric analyses of financial systems; and the determination of the legal constraints – if any – upon executive compensation decisions.
In this Article, I advance a positive account of the economic and legal context of this dispute and then argue normatively for a behavioral approach to its resolution. Because of the unique structure and history of the personal investment industry in the United States, the architecture of this segment of the economy is singularly bereft of beneficial market forces and thus vulnerable to significant fiduciary distortions. The ultimate judicial resolution of this dispute should take full account of the behavioral constraints upon individual investors and their advisors to avoid nullifying a federal statute and to impose discipline in a vital segment of the U.S. economy.
In addition, Professor Birdthistle will be speaking at the first Faculty-Student Workshop today at noon. Look for a video podcast of the event on this blog in the near future.