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Regular version of the site
Bachelor 2019/2020

Introduction to Anglo-American Law

Type: Elective course (Law)
Area of studies: Law
When: 2 year, 3 module
Mode of studies: offline
Instructors: Alexander Domrin
Language: English
ECTS credits: 6

Course Syllabus

Abstract

The purpose of special course “Introduction to English and American Law” (in English) is to introduce the origins of English and American law, its sources and foundations, the basics of constitutional systems of Great Britain and the USA, American federalism, legal education and legal practice, legal culture of the Americans and the British (in comparison with other countries, including Russia), legal and political implications of British membership in the European Union (as well as the Brexit process), other topical issues of contemporary English and American law..
Learning Objectives

Learning Objectives

  • This course is primarily aimed at providing the students the necessary tools to understand and study law of Great Britain and the USA.
Expected Learning Outcomes

Expected Learning Outcomes

  • Among other aspects, students will explore the following topics: • U.S. Constitution and (unwritten) Constitution of the United Kingdom; • separation of powers in Great Britain and USA; • civil rights and freedoms; • main decisions of the US Supreme Court; • political parties and electoral systems;
  • Among other aspects, students will explore the following topics: • impeachment; • death penalty; • foundations of criminal law, foreign relations law, national security law; • peculiarities of application of international law in Great Britain and USA; • legal education in Great Britain and USA, and how to pass Law School Admission Test (LSAT).
  • The students should gain the following skills and abilities at the heart of this special course is the study of basic legislation of the United States and Great Britain.
  • Students should gain the following competencies and abilities: As an introduction to this special course, students will explore English and American methodology of comparative legal studies. They will also study how to do research of English and American law.
Course Contents

Course Contents

  • Legal education in the USA and Great Britain
    Legal education in the USA and Great Britain: sources, development, specifics. Law schools. Preparations for Law School Admission Test (LSAT) to pass it successfully. Continuous legal education in the USA and Great Britain. Comparative law: English and American perspective.
  • Foundations and sources of English and American law. The precedent. Basics of constitutional law of Great Britain and USA
    Emergence of English and American law. Sources and hierarchy of law. The precedent. Basics of constitutional law of Great Britain. Declaration of Independence (1776). American Constitution: adoption, structure, amendments. American Constitution: main features. Separation of powers, and the system of checks and balances. Civil war and subsequent development of American law. Great Britain in the European Union. Specifics of British law and EU law.
  • Legislative branch of government and legislative process. US Congress and British Parliament: formation, structure, powers
    Legislative branch of government and legislative process: general features. US Congress: formation, structure, powers. British Parliament: formation, structure, powers. War and emergency powers. Parliamentary investigations. “Power of the purse”.
  • Executive branch of government: status, powers, apparatus. Presidency in the USA
    Executive branch of government: status, powers, apparatus. Presidency in the USA. Cabinet and apparatus. Impeachment in Great Britain and the USA. War and emergency powers.
  • Judicial branch of government
    Judicial branch of government in Great Britain. Judicial branch of government in the USA. The jury. The U.S. Supreme Court: structure, formation, functions. Selected decisions of the U.S. Supreme Court: Marbury v. Madison; Miranda; Korematsu v. United States and other American Japanese internment cases; Roper v. Simmons.
  • Legal status of the individual. Human rights and civil freedoms
    British historical acts: the Magna Carta (1215), the Petition of Right (1628), the Bill of Rights (1679), etc. The U.S. Bill of Rights (1789) and its main provisions. The Habeas Corpus Act and its suspension by President Lincoln during Civil War (1861-1865). Enforcement of rights and freedoms.
  • Federalism in the USA. Administrative and territorial composition of Great Britain
    Federalism in the USA. Administrative and territorial composition of Great Britain. Local government in Great Britain and the USA. National Guard and Posse Comitatus Act. Federal intervention in the states for the suppression of domestic violence. The Commonwealth of Nations (The British Commonwealth).
  • Political parties and party system. Election law, electoral system, and electoral process
    Political parties and party system. Election law and electoral system. Campaign finance. Primaries in the USA.
  • Criminal law and criminal procedure. Constitutional mechanism of emergency powers and states of emergency
    Criminal law and criminal procedure: general features. Constitutional foundations of criminal procedure. Constitutional mechanism of emergency powers and states of emergency
  • International law in Great Britain and the USA. Foreign relations law. National security law.
    International law in the hierarchy of laws in Great Britain and the USA. Peculiarities of application of international law in Great Britain and the USA. Foundations of foreign relations law. Foundations of national security law.
  • Legal culture: legality and morality. Penitentiary systems in the U.S. and Great Britain. Death penalty
    The First Amendment. «Civil society» and the state. Nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) and their regulations. Penitentiary systems in the U.S. and Great Britain. Death penalty in the USA.
  • Legal practice in the U.S. and Great Britain
    Bar exams and bar admission. Legal ethics, and lawyers’ code of professional responsibility. Peculiarities of legal profession in Great Britain and the USA.
Assessment Elements

Assessment Elements

  • non-blocking current performance at seminars
  • non-blocking abstract
  • non-blocking Exam
Interim Assessment

Interim Assessment

  • Interim assessment (3 module)
    0.25 * abstract + 0.25 * current performance at seminars + 0.5 * Exam
Bibliography

Bibliography

Recommended Core Bibliography

  • Domrin, A. N. (2006). The Limits of Russian Democratisation : Emergency Powers and States of Emergency. London: Routledge. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=157789
  • Reitz, J. C. (2002). A Life in the Craft of Comparative Law. Michigan Law Review, 100(6), 1453. https://doi.org/10.2307/1290450

Recommended Additional Bibliography

  • Grimmett, R. F. (2007). Instances of use of United States armed forces abroad, 1798-2007 : updated September 12, 2007 / Richard F. Grimmett. Washington/D.C: Congressional Research Service. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edswao&AN=edswao.389625264
  • Torreon, B. S. V. (DE-588)1071001248, (DE-576)432859500, aut. (2017). Instances of use of United States armed forces abroad, 1798-2017 / Barbara Salazar Torreon, senior research librarian ; Congressional Research Service. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edswao&AN=edswao.496043161