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Please tell me why 2007 January 11

Posted by queencru in Books, Rants.

When you have a 2-semester course with two different profs, they don’t work together to use the same book? On another book-related note, I tried to buy my books at my bookstore’s online site (won’t be in town until two days before classes start) to find that one book is listed at $37 more than the list price and another at about $55 more than the list price. I can see one typo, but what is going on with two books ridiculously overpriced? Is there some surcharge for paying early and picking up your books later? That makes no sense. My grades are already in the crapper and now they want to rip me off? Sigh.

Update: My prof hasn’t given the blue book a glowing review either, but claims it is the best of the bunch. Now that we’re in the second semester, profs aren’t nearly so enthusiastic about the 1L course material or are really trying their best mix it up a bit. I actually did a graded assignment tonight. What, a non-LRW class that has assignments? Who knew?


Where were these people freshman year? 2006 August 3

Posted by Lily in Books.
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Seriously, between Maggie Mahar’s Money Driven Medicine and Karen Pollitz’s new slide show, my first few courses on health systems would have been, well, comprehensible.

Recommended but not Required 2006 July 25

Posted by bostonlegal in 0L, Books.

In June, my incoming 1L classmates and I received a memo from school with a list of “recommended but not required summer reading”. I was on the phone with my dad when I got it, and he said, as he has always said “recommended but not required means do it”. I immediately felt the peer pressure and competition from classmates I haven’t even met. I caved and bought all the books. The list is daunting.

  1. Karl Llewllyn-The Bramble Bush
  2. Jn. Harr-A Civil Action
  3. Barbara Kingsolver-The Poisonwood Bible & Pigs in Heaven
  4. Walter van Tillburg Clark-The Oxbow Incidient
  5. Anthony Lewis-Gideon’s Trumpet
  6. Duncan Kennedy-Legal Education & The Reproduction of Hierarchy
  7. Patricia Wililams-The Alchemy of Race and Rights
  8. Derrick Bell-And We are Not Saved & Faces at the Bottom of the Well
  9. Harper Lee-To Kill a Mockingbird
  10. (To be read together as an introduction to the development of law) Genesis, Exodus, I Samuel 8, Cicero-On the Laws (Book 1), and Peter Ackroyd-The Life of Thomas More
  11. War & Peace
  12. Crime & Punishment

To date: My kitten has spilled water on one which rendered it unreadable for a few days (The Oxbow Incident). I have started one and put it down for good-not because I didn’t enjoy it, but because i didn’t think it was a worthwhile endeavor when I had limited time to read (War and Peace). I tore through one because I just couldn’t put it down (Barbara Kingsolver-Pigs in Heaven) Today, I finished Derrick Bell’s “Faces at the Bottom of the Well”. Next on my list is Patricia Williams.

Before I started I had read To Kill a Mockingbird, Gideon’s Trumpet, The Poisonwood Bible, and a Civil Action.

While I was sitting here at work just now, I realized for the first time, my dad might have been wrong. There might be a larger lesson included with this list and the reading itself.

“Recommended but not Required” doesn’t always mean do it. For the next three years, I, and every other law student are going to be absolutely inundated with reading. Is it possible to read everything? I’m sure I will see the haggard, unshaven, dark eyed, sleep deprived students stumbling out of the library that tried. Is the lesson here to pick and choose what we find most essential and do the best we can?

There are people who always do all the reading, but I have never and will never be one of those people, and I will have always thrived.

So what drove me (and I’m sure many others) to attempt to read all of these? Perhaps it is the feeling of anxiety produced by the knowledge that law school is a whole different ball game than college and grad school ever were. In college and even grad school to some extent, I felt that the competition was against myself-to constantly outdo myself in regards to my writing, research, and work. In law school, the competition is against yourself, and everyone else for grades, law review, and honors.

I feel the bulldog in me coming out already, and it makes me a little nervous.

Good thing life’s not like “Beaches” 2006 July 19

Posted by schooled in 0L, Books.

The Summer of 0L is coming to a close and luckily, you haven’t expired from a lingering illness and sentenced your child to the even worse fate of Bette Midler serenades… which means, of course, that there’s still time to do that last minute bit of reading–and no, I don’t mean the latest John Grisham, I mean real books… or rather, the kind you don’t get intellectually stoned for carrying.

I’m not sure if other law schools had required reading–I’m leaving that open for others to comment on since I don’t feel like doing the research–but mine requested we read Gideon’s Trumpet. They also recommended a bevy of other books that, frankly, I wouldn’t want to waste valuable shelf space on. So here’s a very short, haphazard list of my own that should be doable in the month we have left:

  • Dworkin, Ronald. Law’s Empire.
  • Hamilton, Alexander, et al. The Federalist Papers.
  • Holmes Jr., Oliver (Ed. by Richard Posner). The Essential Holmes.
  • Vandevelde, Kenneth. Thinking Like a Lawyer: An Introduction to Legal Reasoning.

Which books are on your short list?

EDIT: I should add that I was a Lit major, so yes, I’m an unabashed nerd when it comes to reading. And most other things, come to think of it. But mostly reading. Who has a shirt with a sketch of James Joyce and scenes from Ulysses on it? Me, that’s, who. Damn straight.