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Lecture to discuss judicial divide

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A contemporary expert on sociological jurisprudence will discuss the formalist-realist judicial divide at Valparaiso University School of Law's 26th annual Edward A. Seegers Lecture Dec. 4.

In his presentation, "The Formalist-Realist Divide on Judging: A Way Out," Brian Z. Tamanaha, author and Benjamin N. Cardozo Professor of Law at St. John's University School of Law, will discuss the contemporary debates about judging and how they are often framed in terms of two antithetical positions: formalism and realists. Tamanaha will assert the divide is based upon flawed historical accounts of the formalists and realists, and will outline possibilities for moving past the divide toward a more productive understanding.

The lecture begins at 4 p.m. CST in Wesemann Hall, 656 S. Greenwich St., Valparaiso, with a reception to immediately follow; it is free and open to the pubic.

The lecture is named after the late Edward A. Seegers, a Chicago attorney who contributed to Valparaiso for scholarships and buildings. He also endowed a law school professorship in honor of his parents.

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  1. Frankly, it is tragic that you are even considering going to an expensive, unaccredited "law school." It is extremely difficult to get a job with a degree from a real school. If you are going to make the investment of time, money, and tears into law school, it should not be to a place that won't actually enable you to practice law when you graduate.

  2. As a lawyer who grew up in Fort Wayne (but went to a real law school), it is not that hard to find a mentor in the legal community without your school's assistance. One does not need to pay tens of thousands of dollars to go to an unaccredited legal diploma mill to get a mentor. Having a mentor means precisely nothing if you cannot get a job upon graduation, and considering that the legal job market is utterly terrible, these students from Indiana Tech are going to be adrift after graduation.

  3. 700,000 to 800,000 Americans are arrested for marijuana possession each year in the US. Do we need a new justice center if we decriminalize marijuana by having the City Council enact a $100 fine for marijuana possession and have the money go towards road repair?

  4. I am sorry to hear this.

  5. I tried a case in Judge Barker's court many years ago and I recall it vividly as a highlight of my career. I don't get in federal court very often but found myself back there again last Summer. We had both aged a bit but I must say she was just as I had remembered her. Authoritative, organized and yes, human ...with a good sense of humor. I also appreciated that even though we were dealing with difficult criminal cases, she treated my clients with dignity and understanding. My clients certainly respected her. Thanks for this nice article. Congratulations to Judge Barker for reaching another milestone in a remarkable career.

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