Thursday, October 6, 2011
Seattle University School of Law is currently accepting applications for tenure-track positions teaching legal writing. Individuals teaching legal writing at Seattle University receive extensive training in teaching legal writing. Currently, individuals teach both a first-year course that introduces students to legal research, legal reading, legal analysis, and effective writing, and a second-year course that introduces persuasive writing and oral advocacy.
Individuals interested in the position should send a letter of application, a resume or vitae, to firstname.lastname@example.org or by mail to:
Professor Andrew Siegel
Chair, Faculty Appointments Committee
Seattle University School of Law
901 12th Avenue
P.O. Box 222000
Seattle, WA 98122-1090
Steve Jobs' death marks the end of an era at Apple. Using technology, he undoubtedly changed the world and changed the way many of us practice and teach law. But perhaps he taught us lessons that apply directly to legal writing as well. To Steve Jobs, the package that an idea came in mattered. Several companies tried a brilliant idea, the portable digital music player, before Apple came to dominate the market with a beautiful product, the iPod. Taking the polished-product approach to legal writing can make the difference between an audience accepting a brilliant idea or rejecting it. Ideas obscured by poor writing are not as effective as they might be properly packaged. Jobs also recognized that simplicity mattered. Complex products that are complex to use cannot change society. Likewise, complex ideas expressed through unduly complex writing are unlikely to persuade a judge. R.I.P. Steve Jobs.
Tuesday, October 4, 2011
OK, this has nothing to do with legal writing as such, but it touches on a subject dear to many faculty members. The Chronicle of Higher Education (October 7, 2011) has a front page story about Professor Andre Geim of the University of Manchester, England. After he won the Nobel Prize in Physics last year, the university asked him what would entice him to stay. His only request was a parking space near his building. He got it.
Monday, October 3, 2011
The Texas Bar Journal recently published the second half of Professor Douglas Abrams' essay, What Great Writers Can Teach Lawyers and Judges: Wisdom from Plato to Mark Twain to Stephen King. As we reported, the Texas Bar published the first half of the essay in July. Here are some highlights from the most recent installment:
"If you can't explain something simply, you don't understand it well." -- Albert Einstein
"Any word you have to hunt for in a thesaurus is the wrong word. There are no exceptions to this rule." -- Stephen King
"Have something to say and say it as clearly as you can. That is the only secret of style." -- Matthew Arnold