Course - Law


Recommended Courses:

Any course, graduate or undergraduate, in international relations, international economics, international politics or international law.


This interdisciplinary seminar/course will address a variety of issues relating to trade and economic integratino, primarily but not exclusively in or relating to the Western Hemisphere. The study of the history of Western Hemisphere economic integration will initially be addressed, with the course then shifting to contemporary developments related to the establishment and operation of regional trading blocs such as NAFTA, CAFTA-DR, and MERCOSUR. The ongoing Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiations (among both Western Hemisphere and Asian nations), for comparison, the ASEAN Free Trade Agreement, and if time permits the Southern African Customs Union, will also be addressed. Economic, legal and policy considerations will all be discussed. The course will include the full range of issues covered in modern regional trade agreements, including the increasingly close relationships between trade and economic development, investment, labor rights and environmental protection. Enrollment in the combined sections of LAS 495E/595E and LAW 595E will be limited to 20 students.


The principal reading materials for the course are:


Victor Bulmer-Thomas, The Economic History of Latin America (Cambridge University Press, 2003)


David A. Gantz, Regional Trade Agreements: Law, Policy and Practice (Carolina Academic Press, 2009)


Additional readings will be assigned and made available on D2L as appropriate.

Course Format

Class discussion; student presentations.

Written Assignments

Term paper.

Type of Exam


Basis for grading

Grading will be based on a 30-35 page term paper on a subject related to the course (65%), an oral and PowerPoint® presentation of the term paper (15%), and class participation (20%).  The instructor reserves the right to assign additional short papers if in the instructor’s judgment such additional assignments are warranted. For law students, the seminar and paper will meet the "substantial paper" graduation requirements, since the paper requirements for the seminar are the same as for law school substantial papers. For law students, the topic must have substantial "legal" content.

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