Women’s Bar Association of the District of Columbia and The Washington College of Law 2010 Student Legal Essay Writing Competition

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This call for essays may be of interest to students of Feminist Law Profs and others:  

The Modern American (TMA) announces the American University Washington College of Law (WCL) essay competition, open to all full-time and part-time law students enrolled in and attending an accredited law school in the United States.

The Women’s Bar Association of the District of Columbia (WBA) and WCL share an important history in advancing women in the law and women’s rights. TMA celebrates this history by creating a writing competition that highlights the status and future of women’s bodily freedom in American policy-making and jurisprudence.

Women’s bodily freedom is an issue that has hung in the balance for a number of years. Yet new, controversial laws that criminalize pregnant women’s behavior and girls’ refusal to receive arguably harmful immunizations have put women’s bodily freedom back into the forefront of the public’s attention. What is the status of women’s bodily freedom and what should women’s rights advocates anticipate looking forward?

The winner of the competition will not only receive $1,000, but will also have the opportunity to publish his/her/zer essay in TMA.

PRIZES INCLUDE: $1000 and potential publication in TMA

TOPIC: The status and future of women’s bodily freedom in American policy-making and jurisprudence

DEADLINE: October 1st, 2010, at noon (Eastern Standard Time)

Rules and Regulations below.


1. Any student regularly enrolled in and attending classes full-time or part-time at an accredited law school in the United States is eligible to enter. Submissions must be through email to tma@wcl.american.edu, with one cover page that includes all personal information (name, address, phone number, email, law school, and essay title). Please indicate in the subject of your e-mail that you are submitting a paper for the WBA/WCL Writing Competition.

2. Papers must be the original, unpublished work of an individual student but may have been prepared as a course assignment. Some law school faculty guidance is permitted, but guidance by the competition judges is not permitted.

3. Papers must be typed, 20-30 pages in length, single-spaced, unjustified, Garamond font typeface with one-inch margins. Submissions should contain endnote citations, included in the paper’s length. Endnotes should conform to the 18th edition of A Uniform System of Citation (The Bluebook). Most important, submissions MUST be within the subject matter described in the introduction above.

4. Papers will be evaluated by the following criteria: writing quality and clarity; the level of interest that a broad segment of the legal profession would have for the topic and content; analysis and reasoning; timeliness, originality and creativity; quality and use of research; and compliance with these rules.

5. Papers will be evaluated, and the prize will be awarded, at the discretion of a panel of scholars and attorneys who will have no knowledge of the author’s name or law school.

6. The winner as well as all participants will be notified regarding the competition results by mail on October 21st, 2010.

7. Entries must be received no later than October 1st, 2010 at noon (Eastern Standard Time), at tma@wcl.american.edu.

8. Entry grants TMA the right of first publication of the paper and the copyright if published, constitutes certification of the paper as an original unpublished and unplagiarized work, and is the author’s agreement to hold TMA and its members harmless from, and to indemnify them for, any and all damages and costs relating to copyright infringement or plagiarism.

9. Please notify competition organizers at tma@wcl.american.edu if any of your contact information changes.

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