LAW7350 - Constitution of the Child

LAW7350 - Constitution of the Child

Course Number: 








This seminar will explore the United States Constitution from the perspective of children and children?s interests. We will begin by considering the Constitution?s view of children in our liberal democracy. In what ways are children conceived of as persons and citizens in their own right, and in what ways are they viewed as future adults and citizens? How do race, gender, disability and income inequality affect our constitutional understanding and treatment of children? What is the family?s place in the constitutional structure of government, and what is children's place within the family? As we examine specific constitutional doctrines, we will address several recurring themes: the role of education under our federal and state constitutions; the relationship between the values of pluralism/individual autonomy and parental/state socialization of children; the extent to which broad parental rights obscure children's interests; the responsibility of the state to provide affirmative goods to children; children's right to rehabilitation at home, at school, and in the juvenile justice and criminal law systems; and children's interest in public and political life. Doctrinal areas we will cover include substantive due process, equal protection, free speech, free exercise of religion, procedural due process, the Fourth Amendment, the Eighth Amendment, and, if time permits, Article III.