Paul L. Caron

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Alford: The Strunk & White Law Review Rankings

Strunk & WhiteOpinio Juris:  Omit Needless Words, by Roger Alford (Notre Dame):

Watching my youngest son draft and redraft his high school essays under the watchful eye of his English teacher, who is smitten by the inerrant wisdom of Strunk and White’s Elements of Style, I was curious how the best legal scholarship in the country fares by classic rules of writing. To simplify my task, I have chosen one rule that is easily quantifiable. ... "[T]he expression 'the fact that' should be revised out of every sentence in which it occurs." ...

A ten-year search of the number of occurrences “the fact that” appeared in the flagship journals of the top law schools reveals the following: 

  1. Harvard Law Review: 869
  2. Michigan Law Review: 496
  3. Yale Law Journal: 459
  4. Columbia Law Review: 436
  5. Chicago Law Review: 431
  6. NYU Law Review: 428
  7. Penn Law Review: 408
  8. California Law Review: 406
  9. Stanford Law Review: 388
  10. Virginia Law Review: 364

Law Review Rankings, Legal Education | Permalink