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Jurisprudence of Israeli Political Trials - LAW990

3 Credits

This course will explore Israeli political trials from a number of perspectives. The course begins with the Dreyfus Affair, which began as a trial and developed into a defining political moment for modern France. It also was seminal event in the development of Zionism. The course then considers the Nuremberg trials after World War II, the Kastner trial in Israel in the 1950s, and the Eichmann trial. The last two trials were significant for Israel not only because of the issues raised but also because they were critical events in Israel's efforts to define itself as a nation. Finally, the course concludes with the trial of Yigal Amir, who assassinated Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin in 1995 and claimed that his actions were justified by Jewish religious law. The readings for the course are interdisciplinary, drawing on history, philosophy, and literature as well as legal sources. (No prerequisite.)