Law and Philosophy
Department of Classics, Philosophy, and Religion
Law enters our lives in myriad ways, both requiring things of us and providing avenues for accomplishing our goals. It can be a tool of oppression and liberation; it can provide cover for unscrupulous actors and checks on bad behavior; and it can bewilder and shine light on moral quandaries. A philosophical approach to these issues is crucial to understanding them and their importance to contemporary societies.
The Law & Philosophy minor is designed to give students an understanding of the fundamental theories, concepts, and methodologies of the intersecting disciplines of law and philosophy (especially jurisprudence, logic, and ethics). Students of the minor will examine a wide variety of issues. Course work will thematize topical controversies such as the morality of the death penalty, theories of criminality and punishment, the viability of liberalism, causation in tort, or the appellate process in US federal courts. And, importantly, students will develop skills in reading closely, developing arguments, engaging in research, and questioning assumptions. Both the content and skills emphasized in the minor provide, alongside a student’s major area of study, a measure of preparation for law school and careers in law, public service, business, medicine, non-profit advocacy, and the environment.
Students who do research or internships in ethics for course credit in any major or field of study can apply for this credit to be used also toward the Law & Philosophy minor. Examples might include courses not on the pre-approved list, URES, independent study, a senior thesis, or an internship. Students are encouraged to seek service learning and guided research opportunities, both for credit or non-credit.
Eighteen (18) credit hours to include three courses from the Core Courses list, two courses from the Ethics list, and one course from the Electives list. At least three of the total courses must be at the 300-400 level.
Internships, individual studies, and other courses in law or ethics from any discipline can count in this minor upon approval of the minor’s coordinator; the category into which such a course would fit is also at the coordinator’s discretion.
|Core Courses (at least three of the following)||9|
|Introduction to Law|
|Philosophy of Law I|
|Philosophy of Law II|
|Ethics Courses (at least two of the following)||6|
|Introduction to Ethics|
|Social and Political Philosophy|
|Introduction to Feminism|
|Seminar: Ethics, Environment, & Sustainability|
|Elective Courses (at least one of the following)||3|
|Legal Environment of Business|
|Government and Business|
|Religion and Politics in the United States|
|The Sociology of Law|
|Law and Economics|
Classics, Philosophy, and Religion Department
Joseph M. Romero, Chair
Liane R. Houghtalin, Career Advisor (Classics)
Jason P. Matzke, Career and Pre-Law Advisor (Philosophy)
Mary Beth Mathews, Career Advisor (Religion)
(The person’s subject field is indicated in parentheses.)
Liane R. Houghtalin (Classics)
Mary Beth Mathews (Religion)
Jason P. Matzke (Philosophy)
Angela L. Pitts (Classics)
Joseph M. Romero (Classics)
Jennifer A. Barry (Religion)
Kalpesh Bhatt (Religion)
Michael J. Reno (Philosophy)