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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Law : Law

Postgraduate Course: Law and the Enlightenment (LAWS11119)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Law CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThis course examines legal theorising in the Scottish Enlightenment. In particular, through a reading of source material students will consider debates over Natural Law (reason, will or moral sense), over justice and utility, and over governement, society and history. Eighteenth-century debates over liberty, property, wealth and virtue will be assessed.
Course description The writers considered include Hugo Grotius, Samuel Pufendorf, Viscount Stair, Frances Hutcheson, Lord Kames, David Hume, Adam Smith, Thomas Reid, Andrew Fletcher and John Millar.

By the end of the course students should be able to demonstrate:
(1) a critical knowledge and understanding of the main debates in Enlightenment legal theory;
(2) knowledge of the views of selected thinkers;
(3) the place of Scottish thinkers in the Enlightenment.

This will ensure that the main Learning Outcome will be Knowledge and Understanding, more specifically understanding of some of the main writers on law and justice during the Scottish Enlightenment, the relationship of their work to that of other writers, an understanding of the content of these works, and a grasp of some of the main debates about natural law, justice and history in the eighteenth-century, promoting reflection on thinking about history and law as well as philosophy and law
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Information for Visiting Students
Pre-requisitesEquivalent to Above
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2019/20, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  25
Course Start Semester 2
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Seminar/Tutorial Hours 20, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 176 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) 100% essay
Feedback After the essay titles are given out, there will be a "feed-forward" event in which the students' approach to the topics will be analysed and discussed in a group.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. A critical knowledge and understanding of the main debates in Enlightenment legal theory;
  2. Critical detailed knowledge of relevant aspects of the views of selected thinkers
  3. The place of Scottish thinkers in the Enlightenment
Reading List
There is no preliminary reading for this course.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills This course will develop skills of analysis and the ability to read critically and closely, to evaluate, to debate and to discuss difficult and unfamiliar material in a group, as well as an ability to write cogently in addressing such material.
Special Arrangements None
KeywordsJustice,Enlightenment,Law,Scotland,Adam Smith,David Hume,Natural Law
Course organiserProf John Cairns
Tel: (0131 6)50 2065
Course secretaryMiss Lauren Ayre
Tel: (0131 6)50 2010
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