Law and Sexuality


Course Code:
LAW 576
2 - 3
Law Honors/Pass/Restrd Cr/Fail


This seminar will focus on how the law regulates sexuality. We will approach the material as an exercise in advanced constitutional law, exploring how courts have used–or might use–federal or state constitutional provisions to address issues regarding a wide array of issues involving sexuality. The core of the class will relate to contemporary controversies concerning sexual orientation and gender identity (including, for example, how sexual orientation and gender identity are defined, regulation of sexual conduct, marriage and parenting rights of same-sex couples, and religious liberty debates, among others). But we will also discuss other issues, including polygamy/polyamory and asexuality. We will maintain an interdisciplinary focus throughout as we consider how social, cultural, and political forces shape, and are shaped by, legal doctrine. All students taking the seminar for 2 credits will either write a final research paper of approximately 18 pages (for R credit) or a series of shorter reaction papers. Students who wish to write a longer R paper (approx. 26 pages) may enroll in the seminar for 3 credits. After the term begins, students accepted into the course can transfer from section (01) into section (02), which meets the R requirement, with consent of the instructor. Students taking the course for R credit can take the course for either 2 or 3 units, depending on the paper length. Elements used in grading: Class participation and paper(s).

Past Offerings

2015-2016 Autumn

Law and Sexuality LAW 576 Section 01 Class #27450

  • 2 Units
  • Enrollment Limitations: Lottery 15

Law and Sexuality LAW 576 Section 02 Class #27512

  • 2 3 Units
  • Enrollment Limitations: Consent

Notes: R -Research Requirement for Law Degree.

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