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United States: legal resources: Books

Finding ebooks and books in the Bodleian Law Library

Use the tabs above to understand how the Law Bod's collection is arranged. There is an Enquiry Desk on Level 2, just as you enter the main Reading Room: please do come and have a word if you are having any difficulty in using the library..

Help with finding books

The Law Library's collection is fully catalogued on SOLO, Oxford  University's online resource discovery tool. For those wishing to learn more about using searches, we recommend the following:

Holders of an Oxford SSO can log in to Westlaw US to find national/federal encyclopedia such as

American Jurisprudence 2d
Black's Law Dictionary
Corpus Juris Secundum
Cyclopedia of Federal Procedure
Restatements & Principles of the Law

as well as a number of state equivalents.

Open access resources available to anyone with access to the internet

All the Law Library's current USA law books are on Level 2, the level at which you enter the library.
They are in the collection with shelf marks beginning K. (We use the Moys Legal Classification System, it is no the same as Library of Congress.)
This K collection arranges the books first by subject/topic, then by jurisdiction.

The following is an overview of the principal sections within the K (Moys) sequence - with examples of works about US law.

KA Philosophical studies. 

eg KA.50.USA.FEL 2000  American Legal Thought from Premodernism to Postmodernism : an Intellectual Voyage 

KB Biography, Memoirs, "popular" accounts of trials (as opposed to law reports)

eg KB.15.USA.CAR has biographical accounts of the career of Benjamin Cardozo

eg KB.66.USA.BOE 2013 Congress, the Supreme Court, and Religious Liberty : the Case of City of Boerne v. Flores

KC International law

eg KC.86.BRA 2015  International Law in the U.S. Legal System

KL Legal System, Administration of Justice

KL.22 is for books on the US legal system
eg KL.22.FRI 2017  American Law : an Introduction

KL.23 plus three letter state code for books on the legal systems of individual states

KL.412 is for US legal history 
KL.413 plus three letter state code for the legal history of individual states

In most of the other KL shelf marks, U4 in the third line identifies a US-focused work.
eg KL.221.U4.GRO 2015  The U.S. Supreme Court and the Modern Common Law Approach to Judicial Decision Making

KM Public Law (constitutional & administrative law, public finance & tax law, criminal law & procedure)

U4 in the third line of the shelf mark indicates a work about US public law.

eg KM.300.U4.HAM 2014 Is Administrative Law Unlawful? 

KN Private Law

U4 in the third line of the shelf mark indicates a work about US private law

eg KN.266.U4.PAT 2017 Antitrust Law in the New Economy : Google, Yelp, LIBOR, and the Control of Information

Note  Your SOLO searches may reveal US law books which have shelf marks starting USA 450 to USA 510 and ending (sec coll). These are in the secondary collection of superseded monographs on the Ground Floor. They remain freely accessible (via stairs or lift) to anyone who wishes to consult them. Please ask a member of staff for help if having difficulty finding them.

On Level 2, the level at which you enter the Law Library, an area of the open shelf collection has books with shelf marks beginning General. 
This is where you will find comparative studies, and works surveying the response to legal problems in two or more jurisdictions. 
The books in this collection are simply arranged alphabetically, by the last name of author or editor.

Looking for a Reading List title?

When you search SOLO for books on your Reading List you may find that the location is shown as Law Library Reserve Collection. These titles are available to all categories of readers, but are shelved in a discrete run on Level 2, the level at which you enter the library. 

On Level 2, the level at which you enter the Law Library, an area of the open shelf collection has books with shelf marks beginning Jurisp (short for jurisprudence) where we shelve books on legal philosophy and theory. (Works by Wendell Holmes, Cardozo, Llewellyn, Posner, Dworkin - to name a few - as well as works by others about these philosophers)

As this jurisprudence collection is being converted to Moys, an increasing number of legal philosophy works will be found in KA and other sections of the K run, which is in another part of Level 2.

Please ask at the Enquiry Desk on Level 2 if you are having difficulty finding your way round our collection.

USA Legal System official websites


Recommend a book

If the Bodleian Libraries don't have the print or ebook you are looking for, you can make a recommendation by completing the form below (Oxford Single-Sign On required).

Inter-library requests

If the Bodleian Libraries don't have the book you are looking for, we may be able to source it through Oxford's inter-library request service.