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Constitutional Law is Fun, and William Newcomb-Holden

April 20, 2012

God I loved the constitutional law course I took, political science 470, taught by a one James Todd. Great course, going through the history of modern law, especially American jurisprudence, and the unique conditions, distinct set of choices at crucial moments, and the structural framework and philosophical characteristics that have come to define our great, yet imperfect system of law and justice. Professor or Dr., whichever, Todd was a very effective teacher, and gave the students and the class a good deal of freedom to think through cases and issues with confidenceirrespective of a right or wrong context.

The reason I started this post was to mention a book I came across while studying in the library one night, briefing cases for my constitutional law course. I thrived on briefing cases, and actually liked it! Get some of that, son! Briefing is essentially, reading and studying the main information, the gist of cases, and analyzing it as we saw fit, into the big world of our justice system. Words were the key. Each case has key words that make up the critical road signs that may lead to a case’s simple, clear resolution, or a difficult, complex set of circumstances that promulgate a long, arduous path to a solution. I liked the hard ones. Where every word has to be defined and understood not in the dictionary, but specifically in the context of the law. And there’s kind of a legalese that contains it’s own distinct meanings, and degrees of meaning within their most current meaning, because every case is different, and the life of each case sprinkles new variations of meanings and ideas upon them. Anyways, to Newcomb-Hohfeld.

William Newcomb-Hohfeld’s book, Fundamental Legal Conceptions as Applied in Judicial Reasoning and Other Legal Essays (1919), found my eye as I strolled through aisle by aisle of books on all matters jurisprudence. The Fundamental Conceptions is great in it’s simplicity, an efficient expression of intellect. More on the author, book, and philosophical paeradigm soon.

Fundamental Legal Conceptions as Applied in Judicial Reasoning and Other Legal Essays (1919)

Wesley Newcomb-Hohfeld’s Wikipedia page/profile

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