One of the hallmarks of being a student at Michigan Law is the unusual level of access to and interaction with professors. The mini-seminar program takes that experience to a whole new level: If you thought you knew your favorite professors before, consider the insights you'll have after you've had dinner at their houses while their children run around in diapers. And for the reserved student who has avoided more than cursory visits to office hours, the mini-seminar presents the perfect opportunity to take advantage of one of the most special features of our community.
Implemented in 2005, the program has proved enormously popular with students and faculty alike. The mini-seminars capitalize on both the Law School's unique physical environment, where most faculty live within a stone's throw of the Quadrangle, and our ethos of collegiality, to provide a new venue for personal connections between students and faculty in a casual forum. For one ungraded credit, groups of 10 or 12 students meet with a professor (or two) over the course of a semester (or in some cases, the entire academic year) to hold provocative conversations in a series of two-hour sessions in the professor's home or some other non-classroom setting. The seminar's theme is faculty-selected—often intensively law-focused, balanced by a handful of topics that might be described as marginally legal. About 15 mini-seminars are offered each year.
For 2019-20, the topics Are:
FallAI & the Law: Science Fiction and Science Fact (Prof. Nicholson Price)The Israel-Palestine Conflict: A Dead End for International Law? (Prof. Steven Ratner)The Life of a People's Lawyer: Using the Law to Advance the Public Interest (Prof. Michael Steinberg)Professor Elizabeth Warren (Prof. John Pottow)
Year-Round (Fall/Winter)Beyond Trump: What Happens After 2020 (or 2024) (Prof. David Uhlmann)Book Club: Detroit (Prof. Beth Wilensky)Hollywood, Bollywood and the Law: The Globalizing Entertainment Industry (Prof. Vic Khanna)Law, Legal Work, and Transcendence (Prof. Gabriel Rauterberg)The Supreme Court's OT 2019 Term (Prof. Leah Litman)Please see the F19 Mini-Seminar Series document for "Fall only" and "Fall/Winter" mini-seminar descriptions, meeting times, and special registration instructions.WinterUpper Class:Being Happy (Prof. Margaret Hannon)Fake News? Beyond the Headlines of the Immigration Crisis (Prof. Elizabeth Campbell)Forgiveness and Mercy (Prof. Scott Hershovitz)Harry Potter, Due Process and Wrongful Convictions (Prof. Imran Syed)An announcement with descriptions for "Winter only" upper-class mini-seminars, meeting times, and special registration instructions will be placed on MLaw Live on the first day of classes for the Winter 2020 term.1L Students:Anatomy of a Supreme Court Case (Prof. Richard Friedman)In Courts Where Ghosts Appear: The Salem Witch Trials (Prof. Len Niehoff)An announcement with descriptions for "Winter only" first-year mini-seminars, meeting times, and special registration instructions will be placed on MLaw Live on the first day of classes for the Winter 2020 term. These mini-seminars will start no earlier than the week of January 27.
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