This is the website for LAW 692 (line no. 75693)/HON 494 (88482)

Great Traditions of Jurisprudence

Fall semester 2013

It meets 1:30-2:55 p.m., MW in Armstrong Hall

The instructor is Professor Michael J. White

Instructor’s Offices:

Armstrong Hall 211 (law school) &

LSC (Life Sciences C-Wing) 248 (SoLS)


Tels. (480) 965-0105 (law); 965-0219 (SoLS) 


Office Hours: M 4:00-5:30 p.m. (LSC 248); W 4:00-5:30 p.m. (Armstrong 211):

TuTh 10:30-11:30 a.m. (Armstrong 211); and by appointment.


1. Syllabus

2. Conceptions of the purpose of law

3.  Plato, Minos; Plato, Laws, Book I; Plato, Laws, Book IV

4.  Aristotle, part of Nicomachean Ethics, Books I & II; part of Nicomachean Ethics, Book X and Politics, Book I

5.  Aristotle and natural law handout

6.  Some notes on Cicero

7.  Brief selections from (a) introduction to and text of Cicero’s De finibus bonorum et malorum and (b) from the text of Cicero’s De officiis.

8.  Some notes on Roman law

9.  Some selections from Alan Watson, The Spirit of Roman Law

10.  Some selections from Justinian’s Institutes

11.  Optional Take-Home Midterm Examination

12.  Some notes on the jurisprudence of St. Thomas Aquinas

13.  Selections from Marsilius of Padua, Defensor pacis

14.  Some notes on Marsilius of Padua

15.  Some notes on the source of political (and legal) authority (Renaissance & early Modern period

16.  Some notes on the political theory & jurisprudence of Thomas Hobbes

17.  Some notes on Samuel Pufendorf

18.  Take-Home Final Examination

19.  Some selections from Blackstone’s Commentaries on the Laws of England (link to missing pages 30-31 from the preceding selection).

20.  Some notes on Blackstone

21.  Some notes on John Austin