Distinguished visitor addresses Wayne Law

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 Wayne State Univesity Law School presented its Order of the Coif Distinguished Visitor lecture with guest speaker Saul Levmore (center), former dean of the University of Chicago Law School, on Wednesday, Feb. 8, in the Spencer M. Partrich Auditorium.

Welcoming Levmore were (left to right) Wayne Law Dean Robert Ackerman and Steven L. Winter, Walter S. Gibbs Professor of Constitutional Law.

Levmore presented “Precedent and Convergence: Why Are Different Jurisdictions So Similar Even Though Legislatures Are Not Bound by Precedent.”

“For example, you go to Switzerland and you go to Michigan and a lot of the laws are the same, but the music is different, the food is different,” Levmore said.

“Why is law more alike and the food, music and film more different? It seems a little puzzling because we tell judges they should follow what other judges do – follow precedent – even though Michigan is supposed to do what Michigan did 100 years ago. In fact Michigan moves with the times and is becoming more and more like Switzerland and vice versa. I’m trying to explore that puzzle and I think I have some interesting ideas about how legislatures go about doing what they do.” 

Photo by John Meiu

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