Feminist Law Prof Profile: Laura I Appleman

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Laura I Appleman will join the faculty of Willamette University College of Law in the fall as an assistant professor, where she will teach criminal law, criminal procedure, law and race, and sentencing.   For the past year, she has been a visiting assistant professor at Hofstra University School of Law. Professor Appleman’s scholarship examines the fundamental values and normative architecture of criminal law, sentencing and the legal profession, particularly within the context of the role of the jury and changing philosophies of punishment.   Her writing has appeared in Temple Law Review, New England Law Review, the Federal Sentencing Reporter, The Green Bag and The Professional Lawyer.  

Before entering academia, Professor Appleman was a criminal appellate public defender at the Center for Appellate Litigation in New York City, where she briefed and argued roughly 50 appeals in front of the New York appellate courts, including the New York Court of Appeals.   She studied English as an undergraduate at the University of Pennsylvania, where she also received her Masters in English. She received her J.D. from the Yale Law School, where she was book-review editor for The Journal of Law & Humanities, researched for a variety of professors, and took as many cross-disciplinary courses as possible.  

Professor Appleman currently blogs at the Legal Ethics Forum and is an occasional guest-blogger at Prawfsblawg.  She serves on the Board of Advisers for the Green Bag’s annual Reader and Almanac, has served on the Criminal Advocacy Committee of the Association of the Bar of the City of New York, and has worked with the Brennan Center for Justice on issues of indigent defense and criminal procedure.  

Professor Appleman’s interest in feminist and critical race theory began in college, where she worked with Houston Baker, Nina Auerbach and Vicki Mahaffey.   Her master’s thesis focused on the transgressive sexual politics inherent in Aubrey Beardsley’s illustrations of Wilde’s Salome.   In law school, she studied the effects of race, gender and sexuality on the law, focusing especially on the legal profession.   These studies came in particular use during Professor Appleman’s stint as a public defender representing the poor and disenfranchised.    As a professor of criminal law, she plans to integrate the study of gender, race and sexuality into her teaching, as well as explore the ramifications of such in her writing.

-Posted by Bridget Crawford


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