Public Interest Law
This course examines the law of the administrative state. In the contemporary United States, government is carried out through hundreds, if not thousands, of governmental agencies, wielding power not only over the economy at large but over the lives of every American. Administrative agencies have broad regulatory powers to make rules having the force of law, to adjudicate, to empower individuals as well as to prosecute them. This course is concerned with the law that defines, shapes, and legitimates these powers. The course reflects on how the law manages the tension between “rule of law” values (e.g., procedural regularity, accountability, and substantive limits on arbitrary action) and the desire for flexible, effective administrative governance. The course explores the place of agencies in the U.S. constitutional structure, the source and authority of agency power, the procedures necessary for agency policymaking, and judicial review of agency decision-making.
Chinese Judicial Reform from a Comparative Perspective
Instructor: Susan Finder
STL, as a law school in Shenzhen, has a unique vantage point from which to consider and monitor the implementation of China’s judicial reforms, because Shenzhen has been selected as the location of one of the Supreme People’s Court’s Circuit Courts as well as for many judicial pilot projects.
This course will consider Chinese judicial reforms in the wider context of judicial reforms of developing economies as well as the context of China’s history, political system, and society. It will give students an overview of the issues involved chance to learn more about the judicial reforms from a variety of viewpoints, including from some of the Shenzhen-based participants themselves. Some of the topics to be covered include the role of the circuit courts, splitting jurisdiction from administrative areas, and judicial autonomy/independence.
Comparative Constitutional Law
Based on the idea that comparison broadens the perspective and inspires fresh thinking, this class looks at a variety of important constitutional problems through the prism of different countries’ constitutional orders. What is the purpose of constitutional law? How do revolutions make constitutional law? How does constitutional law work in times of crises? How do different constitutional orders deal with problems of gender discrimination or poverty? These are some of the questions that we approach from the perspective of the U.S., Germany, France, China, Canada, and South Africa, among others. The class includes a strong emphasis on philosophical, political, and legal writings by authors such as Hannah Arendt, Bruce Ackerman, Cass Sunstein, Qianfan Zhang, and some of Professor Jaggi’s own writings on revolutionary constitutional lawmaking in Germany.
The course will survey the entire American criminal process from investigation and arrest to sentencing. The course will cover the Bill of Rights and a comparison of adversarial vs. inquisitorial systems and will present a broad overview of criminal procedure, including arraignment, pretrial detention and release, discovery, right to counsel, right to trial by jury, pretrial motions, trial, and the roles of judge and jury. The course will also concentrate on search and seizure, interrogation and confession, and suppression of evidence under the Fourth, Fifth, and Sixth Amendments to the U.S. Constitution, following the case of a single defendant from arrest to conviction and sentencing.
Discrimination and the Law
Instructor: Stephen Yandle
American law has a peculiar history in regard to discrimination on the basis of an individual’s characteristics (e.g., race, gender, national origin, religion, sexual orientation). This course will examine the history of American law and discrimination from the founding to the current day, looking at discrimination/anti-discrimination in legislative actions (including citizen initiatives), administrative interpretations and judicial decisions. Since the breadth and depth of issues are too great for comprehensive coverage in a single course, the course will focus on discrimination in education as an illustrative microcosm.
Equal Protection Law
Instructor: Mark Rosenbaum
This course explores U.S. Fourteenth Amendment jurisprudence in the area of equal rights and liberty. Questions examined include: the meaning of constitutionalism and rule of law; do rights exist and how are they to be determined?; can rights change based on contemporary values?; the relationship between the majority and racial, ethnic, gender and sexual orientation minorities; do protections exist against discrimination?; what is the meaning of liberty and how can liberty be protected and nurtured?; do rights exist if they’re not specified in a constitution?
Professor: Thomas Man
This course focuses on the U.S. Federal Rules of Evidence governing the admissibility of evidence, including problems of relevancy, remoteness, and undue prejudice; the hearsay rule and its exceptions; the offer of evidence and objection; examination of witnesses; competency and privilege of witnesses; expert opinion evidence; judicial notice; burden of proof; and presumptions. Where applicable and as appropriate, the course also introduces students to the ongoing effort in China to develop evidence as an independent discipline of legal study and to codify rules of evidence for Chinese judicial proceedings.
First Amendment Law
Professor: Mark Rosenbaum
This course examines contemporary issues of free speech in the context of U.S. Constitution First Amendment law: the uses and values of free speech; whether certain categories of speech deserve more or less protection; political speech; censorship and discrimination based on content; hate speech and racist speech; obscenity and pornography and feminism; symbolic speech. Students are asked to develop a coherent theory of speech protection and regulation.
International Criminal Justice
Instructor: Michael Greco
The rapid development of a body of international criminal law that imposes responsibilities directly on individuals and punishes violations through international mechanisms is relatively recent; the body of law is not yet uniform, and its courts are not yet universal. The course provides explanation and appraisal of international law and procedure, and focuses on crimes that are within the jurisdiction of international tribunals: genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes and aggression. The course also briefly consider terrorist offenses, torture and other crimes not yet within international court or tribunal jurisdiction.
International Refugee and Migration Law
Instructor: Christian Pangilinan
Around the world, increasing numbers of people are crossing borders for migration or to seek refuge. Whether because of war, politics, economic hardship, or climate change, internal humanitarian crises push families and individuals across national borders in the Middle East, North Africa and the Mediterranean, Asia, and other parts of the world. This course aims to provide students with a working understanding of the fundamentals of refugee and international migration law as well as current challenges or controversies faced in these fields. The course focuses on refugee and migration law from the perspectives of national sovereignty and its limits in light of human rights standards and international conventions such as the 1951 Refugee Convention and its 1967 Protocol and international or regional agreements on human smuggling, trafficking, statelessness, and internally displaced persons. Students are exposed to jurisprudence from a range of both national and international courts and tribunals.
Instructor: Matthew Stephenson
This course provides a theoretical and practical introduction to statutory interpretation, focusing on the jurisprudence of the U.S. Supreme Court. The course considers the main schools of thought in statutory interpretation (textualism, intentionalism, and purposivism), issues related to the application of important and controversial interpretive tools (such as legislative history and canons of construction), and general questions about the proper role of courts in interpreting legal texts enacted by legislatures.
中国宪法专题（Chinese Constitutional Law Seminar）
Instructor: 黄卉 Huang Hui
本研讨课的主题为宪法基本权利。本研讨课的主要目的有三，一是通过阅读了解我国宪法学者关于基本权利的研究情况，包括研究主题、内容、方法及其发展；二是了解基本权利的法教义学建构，鉴于我国宪法法教义学建构工作基本参照德国宪法学教研模式，学生需要阅读德国基本权利法教义学的文献（Christian Bumke/Andreas Voßkuhle: German Constitutional Law : Introduction, Cases, and Principles, Oxfold Presse 2019），在此基础上对比我国宪法学者相关主题的写作；三是训练学生以基本权利为题目的论文写作，侧重题目的选择、文献检索和提纲写作。选课同学需选择从给定的或者与授课老师商定的题目中认领一题目，撰写6000字以上论文，论文质量将作为确定研讨课最终成绩的基础。
比较证据法（Comparative Evidence Law）
Instructor: 满云龙 Thomas Man
This course explores the central concept of judicial proof in comparative perspective. Through extensive reading, viewing and class discussion of related materials in both Chinese and English languages relating to facts, truth and evidence, judicial process, evidentiary proof from both continental law and common law jurisdictions, mainly the United States, China and selected European countries, this course intends to enhance students’ understanding of the principal concepts of judicial proof and the working process of judicial trials in the United States and China in which evidence plays a central role.