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Full-Text Articles in Legal History

Prosecutorial Discretion: The Difficulty And Necessity Of Public Inquiry, Bruce A. Green Apr 2019

Prosecutorial Discretion: The Difficulty And Necessity Of Public Inquiry, Bruce A. Green

Dickinson Law Review

Prosecutors’ discretionary decisions have enormous impact on individuals and communities. Often, prosecutors exercise their vast power and discretion in questionable ways. This Article argues that, to encourage prosecutors to use their power wisely and not abusively, there is a need for more informed public discussion of prosecutorial discretion, particularly with regard to prosecutors’ discretionary decisions about whether to bring criminal charges and which charges to bring. But the Article also highlights two reasons why informed public discussion is difficult—first, because public and professional expectations about how prosecutors should use their power are vague; and, second, because, particularly in individual ...


Reconsidering Judicial Independence: Forty-Five Years In The Trenches And In The Tower, Stephen B. Burbank Jan 2019

Reconsidering Judicial Independence: Forty-Five Years In The Trenches And In The Tower, Stephen B. Burbank

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

Trusting in the integrity of our institutions when they are not under stress, we focus attention on them both when they are under stress or when we need them to protect us against other institutions. In the case of the federal judiciary, the two conditions often coincide. In this essay, I use personal experience to provide practical context for some of the important lessons about judicial independence to be learned from the periods of stress for the federal judiciary I have observed as a lawyer and concerned citizen, and to provide theoretical context for lessons I have deemed significant as ...


Legislative Committee Systems: A Design Perspective, Chase Stoddard Oct 2018

Legislative Committee Systems: A Design Perspective, Chase Stoddard

Indiana Journal of Constitutional Design

Committees are the defining characteristic of the modern legislature. While the centrality and study of party politics goes back further than committee politics, the focus on committee systems emerged over the course of the twentieth century, and legislatures could not function as we understand them without this mechanism. The United States Congressional committee system is the most studied system, yet virtually every country utilizes a committee system of some sort within its legislature. Despite their ubiquity in and centrality to the operations of legislatures, committees remain insufficiently studied, especially outside of the United States. The existing body of work tends ...


Law, Autonomy, And Local Government: A Legal History Of Municipal Corporations In Canada West/Ontario, 1850-1880, Mary Margaret Pelton Stokes Oct 2018

Law, Autonomy, And Local Government: A Legal History Of Municipal Corporations In Canada West/Ontario, 1850-1880, Mary Margaret Pelton Stokes

PhD Dissertations

The historiography of local government in mid-nineteenth century Canada West/Ontario is divided on the question of municipal autonomy. The more dominant thesis asserts that the Municipal Corporations (Baldwin) Act of 1849 ushered in a period of freedom for municipalities. The second depicts the Act as oppressive of autonomy in the interests of economic development. Both interpretations are based largely on extrapolation from earlier and later periods; there have been no direct examinations of local governance in Canada West/Ontario for what may be considered its formative period, from 1850 to 1880. In addition, much that has been written has ...


The Operational And Administrative Militaries, Mark P. Nevitt Aug 2018

The Operational And Administrative Militaries, Mark P. Nevitt

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

This Article offers a new way of thinking about the military. The U.S. military’s existing legal architecture arose from tragedy: in response to operational military failures in Vietnam, the 1980 failed Iranian hostage rescue attempt and other military misadventures, Congress revamped the Department of Defense (DoD)’s organization. The resulting law, the Goldwater-Nichols Act, formed two militaries within the DoD that endure to this day. These two militaries – the operational military and the administrative military – were once opaque to the outside observer but have emerged from the shadows in light of recent conflicts. The operational military remains the ...


The Loving Story: Using A Documentary To Reconsider The Status Of An Iconic Interracial Married Couple, Regina Austin Jan 2018

The Loving Story: Using A Documentary To Reconsider The Status Of An Iconic Interracial Married Couple, Regina Austin

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

The Loving Story (Augusta Films 2011), directed by Nancy Buirski, tells the backstory of the groundbreaking U.S. Supreme Court case, Loving v. Virginia, that overturned state laws barring interracial marriage. The article looks to the documentary to explain why the Lovings should be considered icons of racial and ethnic civil rights, however much they might be associated with marriage equality today. The film shows the Lovings to be ordinary people who took their nearly decade long struggle against white supremacy to the nation’s highest court out of a genuine commitment to each other and a determination to live ...


Progressive Antitrust, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Jan 2018

Progressive Antitrust, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

Several American political candidates and administrations have both run and served under the “progressive” banner for more than a century, right through the 2016 election season. For the most part these have pursued interventionist antitrust policies, reflecting a belief that markets are fragile and in need of repair, that certain interest groups require greater protection, or in some cases that antitrust policy is an extended arm of regulation. This paper argues that most of this progressive antitrust policy was misconceived, including that reflected in the 2016 antitrust plank of the Democratic Party. The progressive state is best served by a ...


The Empty Idea Of “Equality Of Creditors”, David A. Skeel Jr. Jan 2018

The Empty Idea Of “Equality Of Creditors”, David A. Skeel Jr.

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

For two hundred years, the equality of creditors norm—the idea that similarly situated creditors should be treated similarly—has been widely viewed as the most important principle in American bankruptcy law, rivaled only by our commitment to a fresh start for honest but unfortunate debtors. I argue in this Article that the accolades are misplaced. Although the equality norm once was a rough proxy for legitimate concerns, such as curbing self-dealing, it no longer plays this role. Nor does it serve any other beneficial purpose.

Part I of this Article traces the historical emergence and evolution of the equality ...


Crimes That Changed Our World: Tragedy, Outrage, And Reform: Chapter One: 1911 Triangle Factory Fire: Building Safety Codes, Paul H. Robinson, Sarah M. Robinson Jan 2018

Crimes That Changed Our World: Tragedy, Outrage, And Reform: Chapter One: 1911 Triangle Factory Fire: Building Safety Codes, Paul H. Robinson, Sarah M. Robinson

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

This first chapter of the recently published book Crimes That Changed Our World: Tragedy, Outrage, and Reform, examines the process by which the tragic 1911 Triangle Factory Fire provoked enormous outrage that in turn created a local then national movement for workplace and building safety that ultimately became the foundation for today’s building safety codes. What is particularly interesting, however, is that the Triangle Fire was not the worst such tragedy in its day. Why should it be the one that ultimately triggers social progress?

The book has 21 chapters, each of which traces the tragedy-outrage-reform dynamic in a ...


Reforming The Pentagon: Reflections On How Everything Became War And The Military Became Everything, Mark P. Nevitt Jan 2018

Reforming The Pentagon: Reflections On How Everything Became War And The Military Became Everything, Mark P. Nevitt

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

What best explains how “Everything Became War and the Military Became Everything?”— the provocative title of a recent book by Professor Rosa Brooks of Georgetown Law. In this Essay, I turn to the Department of Defense’s (DoD) unique agency design as the vehicle to address this question. Specifically, I first describe and analyze the role that the 1947 National Security Act and 1986 Goldwater-Nichols Act play in incentivizing organizational behavior within the DoD. These two Acts have broad implications for national security governance. Relatedly, I address the consequences of these two core national security laws, focusing on the rise ...


Petitioning And The Making Of The Administrative State, Maggie Blackhawk Jan 2018

Petitioning And The Making Of The Administrative State, Maggie Blackhawk

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

The administrative state is suffering from a crisis of legitimacy. Many have questioned the legality of the myriad commissions, boards, and agencies through which much of our modern governance occurs. Scholars such as Jerry Mashaw, Theda Skocpol, and Michele Dauber, among others, have provided compelling institutional histories, illustrating that administrative lawmaking has roots in the early American republic. Others have attempted to assuage concerns through interpretive theory, arguing that the Administrative Procedure Act of 1946 implicitly amended our Constitution. Solutions offered thus far, however, have yet to provide a deeper understanding of the meaning and function of the administrative state ...


Remembering An Abolitionist, Ambassador John R. Miller (May 23, 1938-October 4, 2017), Eleanor Kennelly Gaetan, Donna M. Hughes Oct 2017

Remembering An Abolitionist, Ambassador John R. Miller (May 23, 1938-October 4, 2017), Eleanor Kennelly Gaetan, Donna M. Hughes

Dignity: A Journal on Sexual Exploitation and Violence

A memorial for Ambassador-at-Large to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons, John R. Miller (May 23, 1938-October 4, 2017). Ambassador Miller believed modern-day slavery, encompassing sex trafficking and forced labor, requires a principled global offensive that the United States is morally obligated to lead. In the four formative years he led the State Department’s Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons, 2002 to 2006, John Miller set the office’s course as diplomatically aggressive and programmatically creative. He made the annual Trafficking in Persons report more than a bureaucratic submission, putting daring heroes at the center, and insisting ...


Trigger Crimes & Social Progress: The Tragedy-Outrage-Reform Dynamic In America, Paul H. Robinson, Sarah M. Robinson Aug 2017

Trigger Crimes & Social Progress: The Tragedy-Outrage-Reform Dynamic In America, Paul H. Robinson, Sarah M. Robinson

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

Can a crime make our world better? Crimes are the worst of humanity’s wrongs but, oddly, they sometimes do more than anything else to improve our lives. It is often the outrageousness itself that does the work. Ordinary crimes are accepted as the background noise of everyday existence but some crimes make people stop and take notice – because they are so outrageous or so heart-wrenching.

This brief essay explores the dynamic of tragedy, outrage, and reform, illustrating how certain kinds of crimes can trigger real social progress. Several dozen such “trigger crimes” are identified but four in particular are ...


The Legacy Of Slavery And The Continued Marginalization Of Communities Of Color Within The Legal System, Julia N. Alvarez Jun 2017

The Legacy Of Slavery And The Continued Marginalization Of Communities Of Color Within The Legal System, Julia N. Alvarez

All Dissertations, Theses, and Capstone Projects

The aim of this thesis paper is to demonstrate how the history of slavery in the United States continues to marginalize communities of color. The history of slavery in America was the result of various factors. Some of these factors included but were not limited to; economic, legal, and social. Slavery provided a reliable and self-reproducing workforce. The laws enacted during slavery ensured the continuation of the social order of the time. This social order was based on the generalized understanding that blacks were born into servitude. Those born into slavery were not given the same legal or economic status ...


Capitalism And Unfreedom: Louis D. Brandeis And A Liberty Of The Left, Eric L. Apar Feb 2017

Capitalism And Unfreedom: Louis D. Brandeis And A Liberty Of The Left, Eric L. Apar

All Dissertations, Theses, and Capstone Projects

The American Right features a well-developed—and well-heeled—infrastructure for promoting a conception of freedom as inextricable from capitalism. The American Left, by contrast, has seemed content to cede the territory, abandoning the ground of freedom for the terrain of “equality,” “justice,” “fairness,” and “prosperity.” This paper is an effort to address this asymmetry in the public discourse over the meaning of freedom. Its principal objective is to capture the vision of freedom embodied in the political and economic thought of Louis D. Brandeis, one of the American Left’s ablest expositors of freedom.

In addition, the paper has three ...


The Separation Of Corporate Law And Social Welfare, William W. Bratton Jan 2017

The Separation Of Corporate Law And Social Welfare, William W. Bratton

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

A half century ago, corporate legal theory pursued an institutional vision in which corporations and the law that creates them protect people from the ravages of volatile free markets. That vision was challenged on the ground during the 1980s, when corporate legal institutions and market forces came to blows over questions concerning hostile takeovers. By 1990, it seemed like the institutions had won. But a different picture has emerged as the years have gone by. It is now clear that the market side really won the battle of the 1980s, succeeding in entering a wedge between corporate law and social ...


Choice Of Law And Jurisdictional Policy In The Federal Courts, Tobias Barrington Wolff Jan 2017

Choice Of Law And Jurisdictional Policy In The Federal Courts, Tobias Barrington Wolff

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

For seventy-five years, Klaxon v. Stentor Electric Manufacturing has provided a one-line answer to choice-of-law questions in federal diversity cases: Erie requires the federal court to employ the same law that a court of the state would select. The simplicity of the proposition likely accounts for the unqualified breadth with which federal courts now apply it. Choice of law doctrine is difficult, consensus in hard cases is elusive, and the anxiety that Erie produces over the demands of federalism tends to stifle any reexamination of core assumptions. The attraction of a simple answer is obvious. But Klaxon cannot bear the ...


Class Actions And The Counterrevolution Against Federal Litigation, Stephen B. Burbank, Sean Farhang Jan 2017

Class Actions And The Counterrevolution Against Federal Litigation, Stephen B. Burbank, Sean Farhang

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

In this article we situate consideration of class actions in a framework, and fortify it with data, that we have developed as part of a larger project, the goal of which is to assess the counterrevolution against private enforcement of federal law from an institutional perspective. In a series of articles emerging from the project, we have documented how the Executive, Congress and the Supreme Court (wielding both judicial power under Article III of the Constitution and delegated legislative power under the Rules Enabling Act) fared in efforts to reverse or dull the effects of statutory and other incentives for ...


Appraising The Progressive State, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Jan 2017

Appraising The Progressive State, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

Since it origins in the late nineteenth century, the most salient characteristics of the progressive state have been marginalism in economics, greatly increased use of scientific theory and data in policy making, a commitment to broad participation in both economic and political markets, and a belief that resources are best moved through society by many institutions in addition to traditional markets.. These values have served to make progressive policy less stable than classical and other more laissez faire alternatives. However, the progressive state has also performed better than alternatives by every economic measure. One of the progressive state’s biggest ...


Mainstreaming Gender: The Influence Of Women's Networks On Prosecuting Sexual Violence At The International Criminal Court, Jessica Maryanne Zaccagnino Jan 2017

Mainstreaming Gender: The Influence Of Women's Networks On Prosecuting Sexual Violence At The International Criminal Court, Jessica Maryanne Zaccagnino

Senior Projects Spring 2017

The fall of the Soviet Union in combination with the failures of the international community to intervene in the genocides of the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda spurred a new enthusiasm for human rights as a wholly independent movement, termed the human rights wave. This paradigm shift, identified by Stefan-Ludwig Hoffmann, was an embrace of human rights rooted in the redemption of past wrongs. This project is structured as a jurisprudential genealogy that will explore the human rights wave in the context of the Women’s Caucus for Gender Justice, a facet of the transnational women’s network, and their quest ...


Tragedy, Outrage & Reform Crimes That Changed Our World: 1911 – Triangle Factory Fire – Building Safety Codes, Paul H. Robinson, Sarah M. Robinson Dec 2016

Tragedy, Outrage & Reform Crimes That Changed Our World: 1911 – Triangle Factory Fire – Building Safety Codes, Paul H. Robinson, Sarah M. Robinson

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

Can a crime make our world better? Crimes are the worst of humanity’s wrongs but, oddly, they sometimes do more than anything else to improve our lives. As it turns out, it is often the outrageousness itself that does the work. Ordinary crimes are accepted as the background noise of our everyday existence but some crimes make people stop and take notice – because they are so outrageous, or so curious, or so heart-wrenching. These “trigger crimes” are the cases that this book is about.

They offer some incredible stories about how people, good and bad, change the world around ...


Class Roots: The Genesis Of The Ontario Class Proceedings Act, 1966 - 1993, Suzanne Erica Chiodo Nov 2016

Class Roots: The Genesis Of The Ontario Class Proceedings Act, 1966 - 1993, Suzanne Erica Chiodo

LLM Theses

Nearly 25 years since its passage, the Ontario Class Proceedings Act has become one of the most frequently debated procedural mechanisms of its kind. The CPA came about following the release of the Attorney Generals Advisory Committee (AGAC) Report in 1990. None of the current narratives explain how this Report pulled together so many divergent interests where previous attempts had failed. My thesis answers this question with reference to the historical sources and the legal, political and social changes that took place throughout this period.

This thesis also highlights the unique nature of the AGAC consultation process, which saw the ...


Class Actions And The Counterrevolution Against Federal Litigation, Stephen B. Burbank, Sean Farhang Aug 2016

Class Actions And The Counterrevolution Against Federal Litigation, Stephen B. Burbank, Sean Farhang

Sean Farhang

In this article we situate consideration of class actions in a framework, and fortify it with data, that we have developed as part of a larger project, the goal of which is to assess the counterrevolution against private enforcement of federal law from an institutional perspective. In a series of articles emerging from the project, we have documented how the Executive, Congress and the Supreme Court (wielding both judicial power under Article III of the Constitution and delegated legislative power under the Rules Enabling Act) fared in efforts to reverse or dull the effects of statutory and other incentives for ...


The One Exhibition The Roots Of The Lgbt Equality Movement One Magazine & The First Gay Supreme Court Case In U.S. History 1943-1958, Joshua R. Edmundson Jun 2016

The One Exhibition The Roots Of The Lgbt Equality Movement One Magazine & The First Gay Supreme Court Case In U.S. History 1943-1958, Joshua R. Edmundson

Electronic Theses, Projects, and Dissertations

The ONE Exhibition explores an era in American history marked by intense government sponsored anti-gay persecution and the genesis of the LGBT equality movement. The study begins during World War II, continues through the McCarthy era and the founding of the nation’s first gay magazine, and ends in 1958 with the first gay Supreme Court case in U.S. history.

Central to the story is ONE The Homosexual Magazine, and its founders, as they embarked on a quest for LGBT equality by establishing the first ongoing nationwide forum for gay people in the U.S., and challenged the government ...


Foundling Fathers: (Non-)Marriage And Parental Rights In The Age Of Equality, Serena Mayeri Jun 2016

Foundling Fathers: (Non-)Marriage And Parental Rights In The Age Of Equality, Serena Mayeri

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

The twentieth-century equality revolution established the principle of sex neutrality in the law of marriage and divorce and eased the most severe legal disabilities traditionally imposed upon nonmarital children. Formal equality under the law eluded nonmarital parents, however. Although unwed fathers won unprecedented legal rights and recognition in a series of Supreme Court cases decided in the 1970s and 1980s, they failed to achieve constitutional parity with mothers or with married and divorced fathers. This Article excavates nonmarital fathers’ quest for equal rights, until now a mere footnote in the history of constitutional equality law.

Unmarried fathers lacked a social ...


Agenda: A Celebration Of The Work Of Charles Wilkinson: Served With Tasty Stories And Some Slices Of Roast, University Of Colorado Boulder. Getches-Wilkinson Center For Natural Resources, Energy, And The Environment Mar 2016

Agenda: A Celebration Of The Work Of Charles Wilkinson: Served With Tasty Stories And Some Slices Of Roast, University Of Colorado Boulder. Getches-Wilkinson Center For Natural Resources, Energy, And The Environment

A Celebration of the Work of Charles Wilkinson (Martz Winter Symposium, March 10-11)

Conference held at the University of Colorado, Wolf Law Building, Wittemyer Courtroom, Thursday, March 10th and Friday, March 11th, 2016.

Conference moderators, panelists and speakers included University of Colorado Law School professors Phil Weiser, Sarah Krakoff, William Boyd, Kristen Carpenter, Britt Banks, Harold Bruff, Richard Collins, Carla Fredericks, Mark Squillace, and Charles Wilkinson

"We celebrate the work of Distinguished Professor Charles Wilkinson, a prolific and passionate writer, teacher, and advocate for the people and places of the West. Charles's influence extends beyond place, yet his work has always originated in a deep love of and commitment to particular places ...


Lobbying And The Petition Clause, Maggie Blackhawk Jan 2016

Lobbying And The Petition Clause, Maggie Blackhawk

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

Contrary to popular opinion, the Supreme Court has not yet resolved whether lobbying is constitutionally protected. Belying this fact, courts, Congress, and scholars mistakenly assume that lobbying is protected under the Petition Clause. Because scholars have shared the mistaken assumption that the Petition Clause protects the practice of “lobbying”, no research to date has looked closely at the Petition Clause doctrine and the history of petitioning in relation to lobbying. In a recent opinion addressing petitioning in another context, the Supreme Court unearthed the long history behind the right to petition and argued for the importance of this history for ...


Why Foreign Policy Principles Persist: Understanding The Reinterpretations Of Japan’S Article 9 And Switzerland’S Neutrality, Yuki Numata Jan 2016

Why Foreign Policy Principles Persist: Understanding The Reinterpretations Of Japan’S Article 9 And Switzerland’S Neutrality, Yuki Numata

Pomona Senior Theses

This study examines why Japan and Switzerland have chosen to keep the vocabulary of Article 9 and neutrality, respectively, and to reinterpret their definitions to suit their needs (policy reinterpretation), instead of simply abandoning the original policy and replacing it with a new, more suitably worded policy that clarifies the changing policy position of the government (policy abandonment). By analyzing the legal history of the overseas capabilities of the Japanese Self-Defense Forces and the Swiss Armed Forces, as well as the actions and influences of the government, political parties, and the public, this study finds the following trends. First, the ...


Incumbent Landscapes, Disruptive Uses: Perspectives On Marijuana-Related Land Use Control, Donald J. Kochan Dec 2015

Incumbent Landscapes, Disruptive Uses: Perspectives On Marijuana-Related Land Use Control, Donald J. Kochan

Donald J. Kochan

The story behind the move toward marijuana’s legality is a story of disruptive forces to the incumbent legal and physical landscape. It affects incumbent markets, incumbent places, the incumbent regulatory structure, and the legal system in general which must mediate the battles involving the push for relaxation of illegality and adaptation to accepting new marijuana-related land uses, against efforts toward entrenchment, resilience, and resistance to that disruption.

This Article is entirely agnostic on the issue of whether we should or should not decriminalize, legalize, or otherwise increase legal tolerance for marijuana or any other drugs. Nonetheless, we must grapple ...


All Americans Not Equal: Mistrust And Discrimination Against Naturalized Citizens In The U.S., Alev Dudek Aug 2015

All Americans Not Equal: Mistrust And Discrimination Against Naturalized Citizens In The U.S., Alev Dudek

Alev Dudek

Approximately 13 percent of the U.S. population — nearly 40 million — is foreign-born, of which about 6 percent are naturalized U.S. citizens. Given the positive image associated with immigrants — the “nation of immigrants” or “the melting pot” — one would assume that all Americans in the U.S.A., natural born or naturalized, have equal worth as citizens. This, however, is not necessarily the case. Despite U.S. citizenship, naturalized Americans are seen less than equal to natural born Americans. They are often confused with “foreign nationals.” Moreover, their cultural belonging, allegiance, English-language skills, as well as other qualifications, are ...