Visual Law Library

Do you learn better when you see a concept schematically.  Well then the Visual Law Library might interest you.  Flowcharts, cartoons, infographics  – any way that someone can represent the law visually – can be found at this site.  Here is one I liked:



Sports Law News

Lately, there have been many high-profile sports cases featured in the news.  Today, for instance, the National Labor Relations Board (N.L.R.B.) released a decision denying Northwestern student athletes’ request to form a union.  Patriots’ quarterback Tom Brady and the N.F.L. are also currently before the U.S. District Court, debating Brady’s four-game suspension in the upcoming season.

If you are interested in reading more about these or other decisions, there are several sources that you can turn to.  For example, the N.L.R.B’s decision is accessible from their website, and may be found here.  You may also find secondary sources to be helpful.  The Boston Globe, for instance, has written a story on the Brady’s suspension, which analyzes the dispute and includes links to some of the motions filed in the case.  Looking for more?  Just ask a reference librarian!


Summer Reading

With Memorial Day past and the first day of summer fast approaching, summer reading lists and suggestions are beginning to appear. If nothing else, these can serve as reminders
to reclaim a pleasure that may have been consumed by the busyness of law school.

The New York Times has published its Summer Reading section, with lists of titles in TravelThrillers, Humor, Cooking, Science Fiction & Fantasy and other categories.

NYT summer

Below are some of the other interesting lists we have seen so far. We’ll add to list of lists as interesting new ones appear.


And there are the programs designed by schools and libraries for young people, such as these from the Boston Public Schools and the American Library Association.

Whatever your reading interests or genre: enjoy!


A Few Books for Spring Break Reading

Inspired by the blog at Mugar Library, here are a few books you might consider for reading for pleasure, diversion, inspiration–whether you’re heading for warmer climes or hanging out in Boston while the snow (hopefully) melts.

whyte strayed  srodes irving_owen   

Recently described by Jan Morris as “that strange and touching masterpiece,” John Irving’s A Prayer for Owen Meany is a novel about a lifelong friendship between two New Englanders, Irving’s narrator and the unforgettably odd title character. Like his other work, this book explores big themes: friendship and faith, tragedy and redemption and destiny. It is a compelling read, and it may be Irving’s best.

Millions of readers know Cheryl Strayed through her gritty and best-selling memoir Wild, and the movie based on her story. If you’re looking for your next (or your first) dose of Strayed, you might find her Dear Sugar advice columns–drawn from those published at The Rumpus–even better. To find out, pick up a copy of Tiny Beautiful Things.

Exploring spiritual and psychological themes in accessible language, David Whyte’s work can move readers who don’t often reach for a book of poems. Some of his poems (such as Everything Is Waiting For You) have become known through his workshops or YouTube readings. He has also published several volumes of verse. The House of Belonging is a good place to start.

And for fans of history that entertains as it illuminates, On Dupont Circle might be a good choice. James Srodes’ latest book is a gossipy history that spans the first half of the 20th Century. It weaves together stories of a group of women and men who knew each other through Washington social circles early in the century and became major figures in shaping the world we know. Among them are Presidents Herbert Hoover and Franklin Roosevelt and such supporting players as Walter Lippmann and Felix Frankfurter, the Dulles family (brothers Allen and John Foster, and sister Eleanor), Willam C. Bullitt and Sumner Welles. If you’ve ever wondered, Whose idea was the United Nations?, this may be the book for you.

If you’ve been waiting for the opportunity to read for pleasure, one of these may appeal to you. Or just pick up whatever book does, during these days of Spring break, and read.


Massachusetts Historical Documents and Laws

Did you know that there was once a penalty imposed in Massachusetts if you celebrated Christmas?  Check out this law from 1659 (with modern spelling):

“For preventing disorders arising in several places within this jurisdiction, by reason of some still observing such festivals as were superstitiously kept in other countries, to the great dishonor of God and offence of others, it is therefore ordered by this Court and the authority thereof, that whosoever shall be found observing any such day as Christmas or the like, either by forbearing of labor, feasting, or any other way, upon such accounts as aforesaid, every such person so offending shall pay for every such offence five shillings, as a fine to the country.”

To access this and other Massachusetts historical legal documents and laws click HERE.

Today, Christmas Day is celebrated as a legal holiday under M.G.L. c. 4, § 7, cl. 18.  To find Massachusetts laws, check out the Massachusetts General Laws Annotated at call number KFM2430 1958 .A2 in the Fineman and Pappas Law Libraries, or visit the Massachusetts government’s website by clicking HERE.



Best Books of 2014

With the end of the year in sight, publications and critics are posting their lists of best (or favorite) books of the year. Some of them are listed below.

Stitched Panorama

Whether you’re looking for a good read over winter break, shopping for a holiday gift or exploring what has been published this year, enjoy!

We’ll add to this list as more rankings are posted.



Join us on our Social Media and be entered to win a Final Exam Preparation Basket.

As finals approach the Law Library is running a raffle for all students who like or follow us on Facebook, follow our tweets at Twitter and/or visit our blog (and send a note to Steven at telling him what you learned there) from today, November 10th through November 18th.

The raffle basket includes Final Exam “Must-Haves” including:

  • A loaded Starbucks card to help keep your energy levels up.
  • A gift certificate for a study-aid to be ordered through the Library ($40 value)
  • A gift card for a night at the movies
  • A reusable BU mug

Click on the image below to get entered and for more details:


(The winner will be contacted at the completion of the Raffle on or after 11/19/2014.)


Want more Candy? Join our Halloween Hunt.

There are lots of interesting and bizarre laws on the books regarding Halloween.  Find some of these and get more familiar with our print collection.  To get your bag of candy you need to answer the questions and bring 5 slips (found in the books) to the reference desk.  Here are the questions:

1. Is Halloween a federal holiday?

2. Are you allowed to wear a mask in Louisiana the day before Halloween?

3. Can you recover if a stack of pumpkins falls on you?

4. If your house is haunted do you have to disclose this fact to a potential buyer in Massachusetts?

5. If you made your own chocolate for Halloween, in order to call it milk chocolate how much cocao powder would it need to contain?

Happy Halloween

Kürbis Fratze