May 20, 2015

Legal Realism As the Basis For a Law School Curriculum

Robert Rubinson, University of Baltimore School of Law, has published The Holmes School of Law: A Proposal to Reform Legal Education Through Realism at 35 Boston College Journal of Law & Social Justice 33 (2015).
This article proposes the formation of a new law school, the Holmes School of Law. The curriculum of the Holmes School would draw upon legal realism, particularly as articulated by Oliver Wendell Holmes. The proposed curriculum would focus on educating students about “law in fact” — how law is actually experienced. It rejects the idea that legal education should be about reading cases written by judges who not only bring their own biases and cultural understandings to their role, but who also ignore law as experienced, which, in the end, is what law is. This disconnect is especially troubling because virtually all legal education ignores law as experienced by low-income people. The article concludes with responses to anticipated objections to the proposal.
Download the article from SSRN at the link.

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