What's New At Honors: 01-25-2017

Sex and the Supreme Court

HISTORY 397SCH - What has the U.S. Supreme Court said about what type of sexual activity or sexual relationships are constitutionally protected and how and why has this changed over time? What is or should be the Court’s role in weighing in on these most intimate issues?

We will examine several hot button issues such as reproduction (sterilization/contraception/abortion); marriage (polygamous/interracial/same sex); pornography/obscenity; sodomy; and sexual assault on college campuses. We will consider how the Court and advocates framed these issues, used or misused historical evidence, and how the argument and/or evidence changed depending on the audience (i.e. the Court or the general public). Students will write several short argumentative essays, learn how to read and brief Supreme Court cases, and present an oral argument based on one of their argumentative essays.

Prior law-related coursework is helpful, but not required. The course meets on Wednesdays from 2:30 to 5:00 pm. Non-Honors students may enroll in this course with permission of the instructor. To contact the instructor, please email jlnye@history.umass.edu.

Image: "Supreme Court" by Matt Wade, licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0