habeas corpus is a federal procedure for asking a federal judge to review whether custody is lawful habeas reaches some things that you just wouldn't expect habeas was the primary means by which federal judges freed slaves from custody and recalcitrant states after the close of the Civil War it's the way people that are subject to immigration proceedings challenged their removal or exclusion or deportation depending on you know what term you use there's habeas that's used to address types of civil detention that are pretty exotic quarantines what's happened in the last 10 years particularly with the cases that came out of post 9-11 national security apparatus was this need to unite that subject matter with the Habeas subject matter that came before it we're really reaching a point where we have to answer the question is habeas corpus something with unifying themes that should be taught as a standalone subject or is it really just part of these different subjects each of which corresponds to a different form of custody this was our way of making the argument that this isn't a topic that should necessarily be divvied up amongst different courses that it actually warrants its own course it has its own unifying themes and there's something really meaningful to say about habeas even as it operates across different types of custody