Connecticut Law Review Volume 45 – Issue 3

The Derivative Work Right: Incentive or Hinderance for New Literature?

The Copyright Act provides incentives to stimulate the production of artistic work for the good of the general public.  These incentives include the exclusive right to prepare derivative works, such as a sequel. This Note argues that in practice, however, the right to prepare derivative works actually stifles creativity.  Suntrust Bank v. Houghton Mifflin Company […]

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No Farms, No Food: Local Taxation and the Preservation of Connecticut’s Farmland

Connecticut, once a state rich in farmland, has experienced significant loss of farmland in the past two decades.  This Note takes a narrow focus on Connecticut’s farmland preservation programs—specifically, how the continuing conversion of farmland has demonstrated that the design and implementation of Connecticut’s programs have been ineffective in using local taxation as a tool […]

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Let Them Train: Why the Eighth Circuit’s Decision to Stay the Injunction of the 2011 NFL Lockout Was Incorrect

Although the 2011 National Football League (“NFL”) lockout did not result in any cancelled regular season games, nor did it damage the players, stadium employees, and small business owners to the extent that it could have, there are still important lessons to be learned.  This Comment provides background on the NFL’s labor history, both in […]

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Does Intellectual Property Law Have Foundations? A Review of Robert Merges’s Justifying Intellectual Property

Robert Merges’s Justifying Intellectual Property is an ambitious work of unification in intellectual property law.  The book defends a broad and sweeping thesis addressing the positive law of intellectual property and its foundation.  Justifying Intellectual Property innovatively articulates a set of normative midlevel principles intended to justify, explain, and predict intellectual property case outcomes.  Further, […]

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Plurality Decisions: Upward-Flowing Precedent and Acoustic Separation

Beginning in 1977, the U.S. Supreme Court instructed lawyers and lower courts that when there is no majority decision “in support of the judgment . . . , the holding of the Court may be viewed as that position taken by those Members who concurred in the judgments on the narrowest grounds.”  For decades, commentators and […]

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Criminal Affirmance: Going Beyond the Deterrence Paradigm to Examine the Social Meaning of Declining Prosecution of Elite Crime

Recent financial scandals and the relative paucity of criminal prosecutions against elite actors that spawned the crisis suggest a new reality in the criminal law system: some wrongful actors appear to be above the law and immune from criminal prosecution.  As such, the criminal prosecutorial system affirms much of the wrongdoing that gave rise to […]

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“Mentally Defective” Language in the Gun Control Act

The oft-quoted argument asserts that “Guns don’t kill people; people kill people.”  It is essential, then, that gun legislation clearly address who the people are who should not possess or purchase guns.  As the country once again reacts to a tragedy with renewed interest in implementing new gun legislation, we must use caution to clearly […]

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Immigration, Sovereignty, and the Constitution of Foreignness

It is a central premise of modern American immigration law that immigrants, by virtue of their non-citizenship, are properly subject to an extra-constitutional regulatory authority that is inherent in national sovereignty and buffered against judicial review.  The Supreme Court first posited this constitutionally exceptional authority, which is commonly known as the “plenary power doctrine,” in […]

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