Legal Ruralism Blog

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Feminist Law Prof Lisa Pruitt (UC Davis) has a new blog, Legal Ruralism.   Professor Pruitt’s article, Towards a Feminist Theory of the Rural (available here) was published in the Utah Law Review last year.   Here is a portion of the abstract:

Feminists have often criticized law’s ignorance of women’s day-to-day, lived experiences, even as they have sought to reveal the variety among those experiences. This article builds on both critiques to argue for greater attentiveness to a neglected aspect of women’s situation: place. Specifically, Professor Pruitt asserts that the hardships and vulnerability that mark the lives of rural women and constrain their moral agency are overlooked or discounted by a contemporary cultural presumption of urbanism. This Article considers judicial responses to the realities of rural women’s lives in relation to three legal issues: intimate abuse, termination of parental rights, and abortion….Drawing on rural sociology and economics, as well as from judicial opinions, Pruitt argues that the combination of features that constitute rural America seriously disadvantages rural women. She further maintains that this disadvantage is aggravated when society’s prevailing urban perspective obscures legal recognition of the rural.

The article is thoughtful and thought-provoking.   Until reading Pruitt’s work, I had not considered how geographically situated law can be.   I recommend the article and the blog.-Bridget Crawford

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