November 7, 2016

Borgen Speaks at West Point on International Law and Complex Battlespaces

On October 24 and 25th, Professor Christopher J. Borgen, co-director of St. John’s Center for International and Comparative Law, participated in a workshop entitled “Complex Battlespaces: the Law of Armed Conflict and the Dynamics of Modern Warfare,” hosted by West Point’s new Lieber Institute for Law and Land Warfare and the US Naval War College’s Stockton Center for the Study of International Law. borgen

The workshop gathered a group of scholars, lawyers, and officers (many participants being all three) from the US, the UK, and Israel to consider emergent issues in modern combat, including autonomous weapons, urban warfare, and adversaries that are non-state actors. Borgen’s presentation considered how decisions to recognize, or to refuse to recognize, an entity as a state, a government, or a belligerency might affect that entity’s access to resources and how that might in turn affect its strategy and tactics.

November 4, 2016

Wade Presents Paper at Washington & Lee Symposium

Professor Cheryl L. Wade presented her paper, “Compliance as Corporate Social Responsibility” on a panel at Washington & Lee University School of Law on October 22, 2016.  Wade_lores_web

The panel was part of a conference entitled “Corporate Law, Governance, and Purpose: A Tribute to the Scholarship of Lyman Johnson and David Millon.” Academics, lawyers and judges, including Leo Strine, Jr., Chief Justice of the Delaware Supreme Court, Jack Jacobs, Senior Counsel at Sidley Austin LLP and former Justice on the Delaware Supreme Court, and Jospeh R. Slights, Vice Chancellor, Delaware Court of Chancery, paid tribute to and critiqued the progressive corporate law movement. Professor Wade’s paper will be published in the next volume of The Washington & Lee Law Review.

November 3, 2016

Cunningham’s Article Cited by Connecticut Supreme Court

Vice Dean Larry Cunningham’s article, Appellate Review of Unpreserved Questions in Criminal Cases: An Attempt to Define the “Interest of Justice”, was cited favorably by Justice Richard N. Palmer’s concurrence in State v. Bellamy, a decision of the Connecticut Supreme Court.


Larry Cunningham

The case concerned whether Connecticut appellate courts should consider challenges to jury instructions when no objection was made at the trial court level. Justice Palmer’s concurrence was joined by Justice Andrew J. McDonald. Dean Cunningham’s article is the leading one to discuss the ability of appellate courts to review unpreserved claims on appeal. The articles articulates a framework by which appellate courts can analyze legal issues that are raised for the first time on appeal. Dean Cunningham’s has previously been cited by the highest courts in Alaska and Mississippi. Dean Cunningham’s scholarship focuses on appellate practice, criminal justice ethics, and legal education. He is the author of a blog on assessment in law schools.

November 3, 2016

Sovern Gives Presentation to City Bar Committee on Consumer Affairs

On October 26, Professor Jeff Sovern spoke on arbitration to the New York City Bar Association Committee on Consumer Affairs.


Jeff Sovern

Professor Sovern discussed an article he co-authored with Professor Elayne Greenberg, Dean (and former St. John’s law professor) Paul Kirgis, and Yuxiang Liu, ‘Whimsy Little Contracts’ with Unexpected Consequences: An Empirical Analysis of Consumer Understanding of Arbitration Agreements, 75 Maryland Law Review 1 (2015), as well as the CFPB’s proposed arbitration rule.

November 2, 2016

Barrett Gives Nuremberg Lecture at Dallas Symposium

On October 24th, Professor John Q. Barrett lectured and was a panelist at The Center for American and International Law (CAIL) symposium, “The Nuremberg Trials: 70 Years Later, featuring the Storey Nuremberg Collection and personal items from George E. Seay, Jr.,” held in Dallas, Texas.

Professor Barrett is biographer of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Robert H. Jackson, U.S. chief prosecutor at and principal architect of the 1945-1946 Nuremberg trial of the principal Nazi war criminals.

Professor Barrett’s lecture described the Nuremberg trial process and the contributions there of Robert G. Storey (1893-1981). Storey was a leading Dallas lawyer, an American Bar Association president, the Dean of Southern Methodist University Law School, and CAIL’s founder. From June 1945 through January 1946, Robert Storey was a close adviser to Justice Jackson in Washington, London, Paris and Nuremberg. Storey served as U.S. Executive Trial Counsel from the start of the trial through the presentation of the U.S. prosecution case.


L-R: Prof. Barrett, Prof. Leila Sadat (Washington University),
Prof. David Crane (Syracuse University) & moderator Lee Cullum

October 24, 2016

Krishnakumar Presents Paper at University of Pennsylvania Law School

On October 18, Professor Anita S. Krishnakumar presented her paper, “Veiled Avoidance,” at a seminar on Advanced Statutory Interpretation and Legislation run by Professors Jonah Gelbach and Ryan Doerfler at the University of Pennsylvania Law School.  Here is the abstract:  cropped-webpage-i

In its nascent years, the Roberts Court quickly developed a reputation—and drew sharp criticism—for using the canon of constitutional avoidance to rewrite statutes in several controversial, high-profile cases. In recent years, however, the Court seems to have taken a new turn—quietly creating exceptions or reading in statutory conditions in order to elide potentially serious constitutional problems without expressly discussing the constitutional issue or invoking the avoidance canon. In fact, the avoidance canon seems largely (conspicuously) missing from many cases decided during the Court’s most recent terms—doing significant work in only one majority opinion since 2012.

This paper explores the Roberts Court’s recent shift in approach to the avoidance canon. It posits that there are several factors that together have prompted the Roberts Court to continue to rewrite—rather than simply invalidate—statutes whose most natural reading poses serious constitutional problems, but to do so without invoking the avoidance canon. First, the Court may be reluctant to simply invalidate statutes on constitutional grounds because it recognizes that this is an era of extreme political polarization and institutional gridlock. That is, the Court may be going out of its way to uphold statutes that it might otherwise have declared invalid—because it knows that, as a practical matter, Congress is unlikely to muster the political cohesion necessary to fix the constitutional infirmity and reenact the statute. Second, the Court may be reacting to the criticism and negative commentary it has received for its prominent use of the avoidance canon in earlier terms. That is, we may be seeing something of an avoidance, in which the Court ratchets down its use of the canon following periods of high, controversial use and criticism, and ratchets it up again after a period of quiet and relative disuse.

October 21, 2016

Barrett Gives U.S. Supreme Court Review and Preview Lectures

Professor John Q. Barrett recently gave two continuing legal education lectures that reviewed U.S. Supreme Court decisions and developments from last Term and previewed possible developments in the newly-started Term.  On October 13th, he lectured at The New York State Judicial Institute in White Plains, New York, for video broadcast to Judges and court personnel across New York State.


Photo taken by a New York State Supreme Court Justice,

watching in his King’s County chambers

On October 19th, he lectured at the Federal Bar Association’s EDNY Chapter, at the U.S. Courthouse in Central Islip, New York.

October 20, 2016

St. John’s Intellectual Property Law Center Hosts Works-in-Progress Workshop

On Friday October 14th, the St. John’s Intellectual Property Law Center hosted a full-day workshop at which scholars presented early- and mid-stage works-in-progress. The scholars included Professor Eva Subotnik, Professor Brian L. Frye of the University of Kentucky College of Law, Professor Irina D. Manta of the Maurice A. Deane School of Law at Hofstra University,  Brad A. Greenberg, Counsel for Policy & International Affairs at the U.S. Copyright Office and Visiting Fellow, Information Society Project at Yale Law School, and Zvi S. Rosen, Visiting Scholar, George Washington University Law School and former Abraham L. Kaminstein Scholar in Residence at the U.S. Copyright Office.

October 19, 2016

Professor Levine’s Article Quoted in Stanford Law School Study

A recent report from Stanford Law School, Improving Criminal Investigations of Police Shootings, discusses and adopts policy suggestions from Kate Levine’s article, Who levineShouldn’t Prosecute the Police, which was published in the Iowa Law Review in May 2016.

In particular, the report quotes from Kate’s article suggesting that local DAs should not be in charge of prosecuting law enforcement because a “structural conflict of interest” exists due to the close working relationship between the DAs and local police.

October 7, 2016

Professor Barrett Lectures in Nuremberg, on Nuremberg

On September 30, Professor John Q. Barrett delivered a principal lecture, “Finding Nuremberg and Its Legacies,” at the 10th annual International Humanitarian Law Dialogs. The Dialogs were held this year in Nuremberg, Germany, in conjunction with the 70th anniversary of the September 30 and October 1, 1946, International Military Tribunal judgments on Nazi crimes and criminals.


John Barrett

For video of Professor Barrett’s lecture, click here. It will be published next year by the American Society of International Law, which publishes the IHL Dialogs Proceedings book each year (click here for information).

Professor Barrett is biographer of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Robert H. Jackson, U.S. chief prosecutor at and principal architect of the 1945-1946 Nuremberg trial, and writes The Jackson List, which reaches well over 100,000 readers around the world.

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