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    • 20623-01
    • [The] Art of Argument: How to Write about the Law
    • Caplan
    • Mon 12:10 PM-2:00 PM
    • 2
    • -
    • faculty permission (15)
    • not applicable

    [The] Art of Argument (20623). 2 units. The strong written argument is an essential aspect of effective legal advocacy. Lawyers must know how to convincingly present and marshal evidence for a client's position, in writing that is as clear and sharp as possible. Increasingly, lawyers also make use of the media to advocate for clients and causes. In the court of public opinion, it is especially important that lawyers write and speak in crisp, engaging, and persuasive terms.

    To build these skills, this class is designed to teach students how to write for a broad audience--via the op-ed page of a newspaper, a magazine, or a general-interest web site or blog, or in a book review to be published in a mainstream media outlet. The class will also discuss the ethics for lawyers of working as sources with the press, the responsibilities of lawyers to their clients in this context, and the responsibilities of journalists to their subjects and to the public. Students will learn (or improve on) how to use the media to educate the public and advocate for issues that are of professional interest. Multiple short writing assignments. Enrollment limited to fifteen. Permission of the instructor required. L. Caplan.

    Note: First-day attendance is required to hold place, including for any students on a waiting list. Students on the waiting list shuld definitely come because spaces often come open after the first class meeting.
    Course Bidding: In addition to listing this course among permission-of-instructor selections, students should submit a statement of interest (no more than 750 words); a non-fiction writing sample (no more than 1,500 words); and a CV by June 23 at 4:30 p.m. In addition to submitting these materials through the bidding site, students should also send them to the instructor at In the statement, please say why you want to take the course; identify two or three legal issues you are keen to write about now for a general audience and why; briefly describe an experience you have had where you developed as a writer; and mention journalists or nonfiction writers you read regularly about legal affairs and say why they appear to you.

    Location: SLB - 110 (Mon)
    Grade mode: graded
    CRN: 10204