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Greenfield on Law Review Articles

Scott pulls no punches here:

Law review articles are a conversation amongst [law professors] themselves. Colloquially, perhaps they are best thought of as a circle-jerk, where neither judge nor practitioner is allowed to rub up against any tweed-covered elbow. (source)

Now that is what I call writing!

And as an aside to all those law students who were deluded by the glossy law porn into believing that their tuition was tendered in exchange for their being taught how to be lawyers, pay careful attention. The first thing the Academy demands of your “teachers” is that they disconnect themselves from anything having any connection to the law and prove their mettle by devolving into theoreticians of some extra-legal, multi-disciplinary voodoo designed to never serve any purpose for humanity. No wonder you come out of law school lacking any marketable skills.(source)

This may be true, but some of us do try and give our students marketable skills. Last summer, I started making my students submit a bill for written assignments. I teach “billing” as part of each class.

This semester, I assigned my students to work in three-person “law firms.” They didn’t get to choose who they worked with, and they are learning to collaborate on practical projects (like client communication) and billing. I also have the firms give out “bonuses” of up to 4 points, divided however they like (but no fractions). Someone in the group must get more bonus points than the others.

I agree that legal education needs to adapt and to return to its trade-school roots. I hope that Scott realizes that there are a few of us out there who are trying to make his wishes come true.

Now go read Scott’s whole posting. Great stuff.

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