LAW 6930/HIS 6416: Chambers v. Florida: Applied Legal History (Spring 2015)

Applied Legal History Syllabus

Description and goals:

Chambers v. Florida: A Case Study in Applied Legal History, AMH 6557/LAW6930, Thursday, 8-10, Dr. Dale.

In 1940, the United States Supreme Court decided Chambers v. Florida, a case involving claims of racially discriminatory criminal investigation and coerced confessions. In this course, we will study the Chambers case, using it to explore issues of state and federal power, coerced confessions, radicalized justice, and police torture. In this course students will learn history while they engage in researching the Chambers case and putting it into context. While students will be graded individually, based on a series of assignments, we will also work together as a group to create a digital case study that can be used as a classroom resource. The general model for our digital case study will be the Famous American Trials website, here: While we will build the case study on an easy to use website such as WordPress or Omeka (which is specifically designed for history exhibits of this sort), the creation of the digital exhibit will give the students an opportunity to learn (or use) some basic computer and presentation skills. This course will count toward the Graduate Certificate in the Digital Humanities when that certificate is approved.

Time and Location:

Thursday 3-5:00: Holland Hall 283

Working library