Course Details

Originalism: Theory and Practice

Originalism has become a very important theory of constitutional interpretation both in the academy and in the courts.This seminar will explore its normative justifications, its content, and its deployment in legal advocacy and judicial opinions.The seminar will begin by evaluating arguments for and against originalism, contrasting originalism with alternative theories of interpretation.It will then consider various views of the content of originalism, including original intent, original public meaning, and original methods.The seminar will analyze examples of originalism from judicial opinions and briefs, particularly those before the Supreme Court in effort to discern the effectiveness of originalist arguments.Students in the seminar will be required to write a paper.The paper may address the merits of some aspect of originalism or alternatives to originalism, explore the original meaning of a provision of the Constitution or critique existing originalist scholarship on a provision.The seminar will satisfy the research writing requirement.

Catalog Number: CONPUB 762
Additional Course Information: Research Writing


Course History

Spring 2020
Title: Originalism: Theory and Practice
Faculty: McGinnis, John O. (courses | profile)
Section: 1     Credits: 3.0
Capacity: 25     Actual: 7