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Friday, May 5, 2006

T-Rex in Property and Contract Classes

Over at concurring opinions Miriam Cherry has a delightful post on a Tyrannosaurus Rex, which was found in North Dakota in 1990 and became the subject of a lawsuit between the people who found it, the owner of the property where she was found, the Cheyenne River Sioux tribe, and the federal government.  The post is based on her article, which discusses how one might use the case to teach contract defenses.  The fossil is now at the Field Museum in Chicago.

Dana G. Jim also has a very nice article on how one might use the case in  property in the St. Louis University Law Review back in 2002.  Dana occupies a very warm spot in my heart, because he got me started working on the Tulsa riot 'lo those many years ago--and because he encouraged me to think about ways to introduce issues of race into property class (and thus make the class more relevant and accessible to students from diverse backgrounds).

I highly recommend Miriam's post, her article, and Dana's article (available to Hein On Line subscribers), too.  Both Miriam's and Dana's articles are important steps down the road of seriously rethinking what's taught in the first year and how we teach it.  This is a topic propertyprofs will talk a lot about, I hope.  I'll be interested in seeing where the property course goes and what cases we're going to add (in addition to statutes and drafting and negotiation material, too).

Al Brophy

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