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Courses Offered in Venice

Venice 2016 Courses

Law, Literature, and Culture (Examples from Italy, and some detours), (3 Credit Hours) taught by Dean Richard Schneider:

The study of legal themes in great literature has been a significant complement to more traditional classwork in law schools.  Students learn to approach traditional problems in non-traditional ways, leading often to better outcomes.  So, how about reading a bit of Dante in the city where he became fatally sick, asking why he was so obsessed by punishment, and then visiting his tomb in Ravenna?  Let’s read about how a certain wise woman outsmarted the men in a legal proceeding in the 14th century.  Let’s see why a contract secured by a pound of flesh couldn’t be enforced in the Venice of the 16th century?  How about questioning Italy’s organized crime by examining a novel and a movie?   Finally, wouldn’t it be fun to read a Donna Leon mystery (or two) and literally follow in the footsteps of Commissario Brunetti as he solves crimes in contemporary Venice?  Law, Literature, and Culture transplanted onto Italian soil will focus on interpretation, analysis, and group discussion of seminal works of literature and how those works can be read in a legal context.  The authors we read will include Dante, Boccaccio, Shakespeare, Sciascia,  and Donna Leon.  We will also spend some sessions discussing Italian cinema  (e.g., The Bicycle Thief, Divorce Italian Style, and Il Divo).  No prerequisite is required.  Grades will be based on participation and a paper to be completed by September 2016.

Introduction to the European Union,  (2 Credit Hours) taught by Dean Richard Schneider

The European Union embraces 28 countries and 24 official and working languages.  It is a large free trade area and much of it may be traversed without required documentation or passport.  Brussels, the seat of European Government, has taken on huge importance notwithstanding the historical and cultural strength of the Member States.  Nonetheless, the European Union has been affected recently by enormous problems related to the economy and the role of the Euro as well as issues relating to citizenship, refugee status, and freedom of movement.  This course will constitute an introduction to the history, purposes, functioning, and, occasionally, dysfunctioning of the Union.  We will look at the interrelations among the European Parliament, the European Commission, the Court of Justice, and the Council as well as other bodies such as the European Court of Human Rights which is affiliated with the Council of Europe.  By the end of the course the student will have acquired a fundamental knowledge base about the legal functioning of one of the most important regions in the world.  Readings will be drawn mostly from an EU law textbook.   The course will be graded on participation and an exam to be given the last day of class.

Non-Wake Forest students should confirm that credit for these courses is accepted in their home law school. Grades for non-Wake Forest students will be only on a Pass/Fail basis (with a “C” being the minimum grade to earn a passing grade.)