Ancient Athenian Law

Course Number:

Credit Hours:
3 Credit Hours

Prerequisites: RCC*. The ancient Athenians have been widely celebrated for their contributions to literature, philosophy and political thought. However, the genius of the Athenian people was also reflected in their legal innovations – which include the concepts of trial-by jury and judicial review. This course will provide students with a basic understanding of the structure and procedures of the Athenian legal system. Topics covered in the course include the Athenian constitution, the Athenian jury system, the resolution of commercial disputes, adultery, the torture of witnesses, and the sentencing of criminals. From their readings, students will gain an understanding of a legal system that struggled with many of the same issues that face modern society and which often provided thoughtful and creative solutions. In lieu of a final exam, students will write a 10-page research paper regarding an aspect of Athenian law. Students may choose to fulfill their Upper Level Writing Requirement with this course by writing a 20-page research paper. The course will satisfy the perspective elective requirement.

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