Guide to Submitting to Specialty Law Reviews and Journals in Gender, Women & Sexuality

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I’ve prepared a guide to submitting to 29 specialty law reviews and law journals classified by the W&L Law Journal Rankings under the subject  “Gender, Women and Sexuality,” as well as  5 additional journals with the word “gender” in the title.  The guide is here on SSRN.  The chart contains details on the mechanics of submitting to these 34 journals.

For now, the document contains information about word count limitations, submission details, whether the HeinOnline Law Journal Library indexes the journal’s articles, and other guidelines authors may find relevant when considering sending their work to specialty law reviews in Gender, Women & Sexuality.

Details vary widely from journal to journal. Not all journals accept unsolicited contributions (or are still in existence!).

Corrections, additions, refinements to this chart are very welcome. (SSRN will not make the chart available as a publicly-searchable paper, but it is included in my “privately available” papers accessible from my public SSRN page here. Go figure.)

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Embryos are Property, Not Persons, at Least in Ohio

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The Cleveland Plain Dealer reports on the case here. An excerpt:

An appellate court Thursday ruled against a couple seeking a legal declaration that their embryos lost in a freezer malfunction last year were living persons and should have been treated as patients, not property.

The 8th District Ohio Court of Appeals, in a 2-1 decision, upheld then-Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Judge Stuart Friedman’s ruling that the frozen embryos were not persons.

H/T Nick Piscka.

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Call for Sabbatical Visitors: Columbia Center for Gender & Sexuality Law (@GenderSexLaw)

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From colleagues at Columbia:

The Center for Gender and Sexuality Law at Columbia Law School invites applications for a sabbatical visitor for the 2019-2020 academic year to undertake research, writing and collaboration with Center faculty and students in ways that span traditional academic disciplines. The CGSL welcomes applications from faculty from any field who are interested in spending a semester or the academic year in residence at Columbia Law School working on scholarly projects relating to Gender and/or Sexuality Law.

Sabbatical Visitors will receive an office with phone and computer, secretarial support and full access to university libraries, computer systems and recreational facilities. In addition, Sabbatical Visitors will be expected to participate in CGSL activities and present a paper at the Center’s Colloquium Series.

The Center will be accepting submissions through May 15, 2019.  We prefer electronic submissions be sent to gender_sexuality_law@law.columbia.edu

Applicants should submit:

  • Curriculum vitae 
  • Writing sample 
  • Research statement (of approximately 1,000 words) that describes the proposed work during the Sabbatical period
  • Names of two references who are familiar with your current academic research 

Direct questions to: Liz Boylan, Assistant Director for the Center for Gender & Sexuality Law at eboyla@law.columbia.edu.  Liz may also be reached by phone at 212.854.0167.

Learn more about the Sabbatical Visitors Program on our website, here: https://bit.ly/2IVar6O.

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CFP: Critical Legal Academics and Scholars International Collaborative Virtual Workshops

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Cyra Akila Choudhury (FIU) is coordinating a series of virtual research and writing workshops called CLASIC, the Critical Legal Academics and Scholars International Collaborative.

The workshops will be virtual meetings of collaborative members and can be open to all or by invitation only. It provides a virtual space in which papers, ideas, book proposals, etc., can be workshoped for feedback. The format follows Harvard’s Institute for Global Law and Policy writing workshops.

In addition to workshoping papers, scholars will have the opportunity to collaborate, connect, disseminate work and increase readership/audience for critical legal work that otherwise may be overlooked.

The first workshop will take place on Tuesday, April 23.  More info available here. Anyone interested in participating should email Professor Choudhury: cyra.choudhury (at) fiu.edu.

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Call for Panels and Conference Announcement: Women’s Leadership in Academia Conference @UVALaw, July 18-19, 2019

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From colleagues at UVa:

Call for Panel Proposals

We are currently accepting proposals for panels on issues relating to women in legal academia for the second annual Women’s Leadership in Academia Conference, to be held at UVA Law School on July 18-19, 2019. The conference will address the unique perspectives and challenges of women and provide programming that will be useful to developing leaders. Conference programming is focused on building skills and providing tools and information that are directly applicable to women aspiring to be leaders in legal education. Proposals should include a panel title, description, and proposed panelists. Selected panels will be notified by May 15, and panelists’ conference registration and travel costs will be covered. More information on the conference, including a link to provide panel proposals, is available here. Proposals are due by May 1, 2019. For questions, please contact Leslie Kendrick at kendrick@law.virginia.edu.

Conference news:

Second Annual Women’s Leadership in Academia Conference: July 18-19, 2019

Registration is now open for the second annual conference on Women’s Leadership in Academia, to be held at UVA Law School on July 18-19, 2019. The conference is an event of the Women’s Leadership Initiative, which was developed with the goal of advancing women professors, librarians and clinicians in leadership positions in the legal academy. Conference programming is focused on building skills and providing tools and information that are directly applicable to women aspiring to be leaders in legal education. The conference will address the unique perspectives and challenges of women and provide programming that will be useful to developing leaders. Along with panels and workshops, the conference will feature CV review and advising with recruiters. Travel scholarships are available. Early bird registration is open through May 31, and regular registration continues until the conference reaches full capacity. More information is available here. For questions, please contact Leslie Kendrick at kendrick@law.virginia.edu.

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Symposium Program: Race-ing Justice, En-Gendering Power: Black Lives Matter, #MeToo, and the Role of Intersectional Legal Analysis

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April 12, 2019 Symposium Sponsored by the Wisconsin Journal of Law, Gender & Society

Welcoming Remarks + Framing the Issues 8:45-9:45 am

Professor Linda S. Greene (Wisconsin), Professor Lolita Buckner Inniss (SMU), Sam Bach (WJLGS) 

Session #1: Moderator Linda S. Greene 9:15-10:15 am

Professor Keisha Lindsay  

Professor Lolita Buckner Inniss  

Student Respondents  

Session #2: Moderator Bridget J. Crawford 10:30-11-30 am

Professor Bennett Capers (Brooklyn)  

Professor Noa Ben-Asher (Pace)  

Student Respondents  

Session #3: Keynote Address  

Professor Osamudia James (Acting Dean and Professor of Law, University of Miami School of Law; Former William H. Hastie Fellow, University of Wisconsin 2006-2008) 

Session #4: Moderator: Professor Lolita Buckner Inniss 1:45-2:15 pm

Professor Mehrsa Baradaran

Student Respondents

Student Break-Out Discussions: Moderator Bridget J. Crawford 2:15-3:00 pm

Concluding Remarks 3:00-3:15 pm

Professor Linda S. Greene (Wisconsin), Professor Lolita Buckner Inniss (SMU), Brianna Zawada (WJLGS) 

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Race-ing Justice, En-Gendering Power: Black Lives Matter, #MeToo and the Role of Intersectional Legal Analysis: Symposium @WisconsinLaw J. L., Gender & Soc’y

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Today at the University of Wisconsin, the Journal of Law, Gender & Society is hosting a symposium on “Race-ing Justice, En-Gendering Power: Black Lives Matter, #MeToo and the Role of Intersectional Legal Analysis: Symposium.” Here is the program description:

Recent years have witnessed an overwhelming outcry from activists who have protested seemingly never-ending instances of unjustified police and vigilante detentions, assaults, and killings of black people. These tragedies cross class and gender lines, as black people from all walks of life seemed at all times prone to being summarily judged and even executed by agents of the state or by self-deputized private citizens. During the same period, we are experiencing a cultural watershed moment, as women have begun to fight loudly and publicly against sexual harassment, violence and abuse by powerful or empowered men. Prior generations of women have often suffered violations and indignities in silence, fearing that formal or informal complaints might endanger their jobs or relationships with coworkers, or even attract more harassment or abuse.

These concerns are exacerbated and further complicated by the involvement of so-called alt-right groups as antagonists to both the #MeToo and the Black Lives Matter movements and by strains of virulent anti-Semitism that often come hand-in-hand with the alt-right’s sexist, racist, and xenophobic rhetoric. One particularly salient example of public allegations of sexual violence recently in the news was the United States Supreme Court confirmation hearings of Justice Brett Kavanaugh. The testimony of Dr. Christine Blasey Ford that Kavanaugh attempted to rape her caused some to speculate that women throughout the United States would mobilize politically in response. 

While both the #MeToo and Black Lives Matter movements are critical reflections on compelling legal and social issues, there are some who suggest that the Black Lives Matter movement is fading into obscurity as the minor rumblings of a few disaffected activists who have maximized their media exposure, along the lines of the Occupy movement. In contrast, the #MeToo Movement has spread and flourished across industries in the United States and even around the globe, seeming to reshape the culture and causing many to question the impact of unequal gender relations and to challenge notions of power and sexual autonomy. This is a important moment to enter an unexplored intersection between gender and race.

Speakers include Linda S. Greene (Wisconsin), Lolita Buckner-Inniss (SMU), Noa Ben-Asher (Pace), Bennett Capers (Brooklyn), Osamudia James (Miami), Keisha Lindsay (Political Science, Wisconsin) and Mehrsa Baradaran (Georgia).

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Call for Authors–Feminist Judgments: Rewritten Property Law Opinions

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Deadline for Applying: Friday, April 26, 2019

The U.S. Feminist Judgments Project seeks contributors of rewritten judicial opinions and commentary on the rewritten opinions for an edited collection tentatively titled Feminist Judgments: Rewritten Property Opinions. This edited volume is part of a collaborative project among law professors and others to rewrite, from a feminist perspective, key judicial decisions in the United States. The initial volume, Feminist Judgments: Rewritten Opinions of the United States Supreme Court, edited by Kathryn M. Stanchi, Linda L. Berger, and Bridget J. Crawford, was published by Cambridge University Press in 2016. Cambridge University Press has approved a series of Feminist Judgments books. In 2017, Cambridge University Press published the tax volume titled Feminist Judgments: Rewritten Tax Opinions. Other volumes in the pipeline include rewritten trusts and estates opinions and rewritten family law opinions.

Property law volume editors Eloisa C. Rodriguez-Dod and Elena Maria Marty-Nelson seek prospective authors and commentators for multiple rewritten property opinions covering a range of topics. With the help of an advisory board of distinguished property law scholars, the editors have selected a list of cases that have not appeared in other Feminist Judgment volumes; potential authors are welcome to suggest opinions which do not appear on the list.

Proposals must be either to (1) rewrite a case opinion (subject to a 10,000-word limit) or (2) comment on a rewritten opinion (subject to a 4,000-word limit). Rewritten opinions may be re-imagined majority opinions, concurrences, or dissents. Authors of rewritten opinions will be bound by the law and precedent in effect at the time of the original decision. Commentators should explain the original court decision, how the rewritten feminist opinion differs from the original decision, and the impact the rewritten feminist opinion might have made. The volume editors conceive of feminism as a broad movement and welcome proposals that bring into focus intersectional concerns beyond gender, such as race, class, disability, gender identity, age, sexual orientation, national origin, and immigration status.

To apply, please email (1) a paragraph or two describing your area of expertise and your interest in this project; (2) your top two or three preferences from the list of cases below; and (3) whether you prefer to serve as an author of a rewritten opinion or an author of a commentary to a rewritten opinion. Please submit this information via email to the editors, Eloisa C. Rodriguez-Dod and Elena Maria Marty-Nelson, at elrodrig@fiu.edu and nelsone@nova.edu by Friday, April 26, 2019. The Feminist Judgments Project and the Property book editors are committed to including authors from diverse backgrounds. If you feel an aspect of your personal identity is important to your participation, please feel free to include that in your expression of interest. The editors will notify accepted authors and commentators by Monday, May 13, 2019. First drafts of rewritten opinions will be due on Monday, September 16, 2019. First drafts of commentaries will be due on Monday, October 28, 2019.

Tentative list of cases below.



  1. Moore v. City of E. Cleveland, 431 U.S. 494 (1977) (exclusionary zoning)
  2. Ass’n for Molecular Pathology v. Myriad Genetics, Inc., 569 U.S. 576 (2013) (patents)
  3. Sawada v. Endo, 561 P.2d 1291 (Haw. 1977) (tenancy by the entireties)
  4. Gruen v. Gruen, 496 N.E.2d 869 (N.Y. 1986) (inter vivos gifts)
  5. Coggan v. Coggan, 239 So. 2d 17 (Fla. 1970) (ouster of co-tenant)
  6. Phillips Neighborhood Hous. Tr. v. Brown, 564 N.W.2d 573 (Minn. Ct. App. 1997) (lease termination for illegal activity)
  7. Taylor v. Canterbury, 92 P.3d 961 (Colo. 2004) (secret severance of joint tenancy)
  8. White v. Samsung Elecs. Am., Inc., 971 F.2d 1395 (9th Cir. 1992) (publicity rights)
  9. Johnson v. M’Intosh, 21 U.S. 543 (1823) (Native American property rights)
  10. Dolan v. City of Tigard, 512 U.S. 374 (1994) (exactions/eminent domain)
  11. Bartley v. Sweetser, 890 S.W.2d 250 (Ark. 1994) (premises liability)
  12. Tate v. Water Works & Sewer Bd. of City of Oxford, 217 So. 3d 906 (Ala. Civ. App. 2016) (adverse possession and condemnation)
  13. Blake v. Stradford, 725 N.Y.S.2d 189 (Dist. Ct. 2001) (ejectment of domestic partner)
  14. Pocono Springs Civic Ass’n, Inc. v. MacKenzie, 667 A.2d 233 (Pa. Super. Ct.1995) (abandonment of real property)
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Perspectives on Touching

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Humans are tactile creatures.  It is one of the senses on which we depend for physical, emotional and spiritual health and safety.  It is a sense particularly important to communication, connection, growth and development.  Our body integrity and sense of autonomy is similarly precious.

Somehow, in navigating the transition of our society and community from one obsessed and represented by commitment to binary gender, including identity, expression and orientation, and from one that has plainly failed to correct and address the serious problem of sexual harassment, assault and rape,  it is important to recognize and appreciate the deep differences between attempted/completed sexual assaults and rapes usually in Western culture carried out/experienced primarily in private, and touchings that occur in public and that are not overtly sexual (do not involve groping of organs considered in American society to be sexual).  Thus, it is highly problematic to have a politician, someone who has chosen to devote herself to public political life, talk about another politician’s placing of hands on her shoulders from behind and kissing her on the back of her head, at a public event, as if it is the equivalent of an attempted or completed sexual assault or rape conducted in private, or as the equivalent of persistent and serious harassment from a person in power to a person who lacks that power (the classic sexual harassment problem faced in many employment situations).

We risk trivializing a conversation that has to remain relevant to the majority of the population, for the goal of gender equality to be realized in our community.  Lucy Flores is fortunate that Senator Biden’s placing of his hands on her shoulders from behind and kissing the back of her head in public is the thing that made her fear the earth had dropped under her feet.  She has yet to meet the real thing – none of us should be the object or subject of gender harassment or assault.  Lucy Flores’ experience however dismaying to her is not what I would consider any of those things.  I am very troubled by the fact that she is in the camp of another politician who did not hesitate to undermine, disrespect and taunt the leading candidate for the 2016 presidential election who was hands-and above the most experienced and qualified person running for president. 

Make no mistake – unwanted or unwelcome touchings of any sort are inappropriate in any culture.  But it’s complicated, right?  And it’s a matter of degree.   We have dozens of cultures (including latinx culture) that may render certain touchings acceptable within that culture.  Generational status, age, background, the touchings we grew up with in families, geography (whether you grew up in the south or north or west, etc.) all influence the degree of acceptability various people may have for certain touchings.  Again, breast grabbing, crotch grabbing, vagina grabbing, penis grabbing, backside grabbing, forced mouth kissing are not what I’m talking about – those are plainly and highly problematic.  But that’s not what happened here.  We shouldn’t lose sight of the difference.

-M. Isabel Medina

(these views are the author’s and are not the views of any institution with which she is affiliated)

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Chapman Law Review: CFP “A Fifty Year Retrospective on Major Laws of the 91st Congress:

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From students at the Chapman Law Review:

Invitation to Submit Articles for Chapman Law Review’s
2020 Issue provisionally entitled “A 50-Year Retrospective on Major Laws of the 91st Congress”


Chapman Law Review is pleased to invite article submissions on the theme: “A 50-Year Retrospective on Major Laws of the 91st Congress.” Publications will appear in a symposium edition, and authors will receive an honorarium.


Were the 1970s a moment for environmental and health and safety regulation? In this symposium issue, the Chapman Law Review is soliciting papers taking a retrospective look at the legislation that was passed in 1970, a critical year with several key legislative outputs that changed the way the country governs myriad health, safety, and environmental concerns. This issue will focus on the progress of the statutory products that emerged from this period. The Chapman Law Review is looking for papers that are grounded in a retrospective analysis of particular statutes and how they evolved or formed the basis of other developments. Furthermore, comparative perspectives between statutes produced at this time, as well as articles that identify the significance of this time period and how this legislative moment was possible in light of the current legislative gridlock and landscape, are welcome.

In this issue, the Chapman Law Review is seeking to publish 7 to 9 articles that cover the following statutes or some combination thereof:

• National Environmental Policy Act, Pub.L. 91–190, 83 Stat. 852
• Organized Crime Control Act, Pub.L. 91–452, 84 Stat. 922
• Bank Secrecy Act, Pub.L. 91–508, 84 Stat. 1118
• Controlled Substances Act, Pub.L. 91–513, 84 Stat. 1242
• Plant Variety Protection Act, Pub.L. 91–577, 84 Stat. 1404
• Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA), Pub.L. 91–596
• Housing and Urban Development Act of 1970, Pub.L. 91–609, 84 Stat. 1770


Chapman Law Review has dedicated its written symposium issue to this noteworthy topic. We are open to submissions with perspectives that focus on a single statute from this list, in addition to perspectives that take a look at the relationship with other statutes. Chapman Law Review would be honored to publish your work.


The Chapman Law Review will be offering an honorarium to authors who are accepted to write for this written symposium issue.
Submission Information:


We are looking for papers with an 8000-word count minimum—ideal submissions will contain between 15,000 to 20,000 words including footnotes. If you would like to apply to participate in the Symposium, please submit an abstract of at least 1000 and not to exceed 1500 words, along with a current curriculum vitae by June 1, 2019 to Caroline J. Cordova. Offers will be sent shortly thereafter. The deadline for the completed paper will be August 26, 2019.


Although there is not a live symposium attached to this themed issue, papers can resemble what one might submit for a symposium, and the issue will be identified as a themed issue so that you may also designate it as such, if you would like. Selected papers will be published in a special issue of the Chapman Law Review in approximately March 2020.

If you have questions, please contact Caroline J. Cordova, Senior Articles Editor, at cordo115@mail.chapman.edu.

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UMKC School of Law Advocacy Teaching Fellow Advertisement

From colleagues at UMKC:

This Fellowship is supported by the gift creating the Douglass Stripp Chair in Advocacy, occupied by Dean’s Distinguished Professor of Law S. Rafe Foreman. Professor Foreman and Professor Michaelle Tobin work together as a team, teaching and coaching to build a highly successful program. US News and World Report ranks UMKC as the #21 Advocacy Program in the nation and we aspire to rise further in the rankings. In 2018, for the second year in a row, UMKC was one of only sixteen teams in the country to qualify for the National Board of Trial Advocacy’s Tournament of Champions competition.

UMKC School of Law offers an exciting opportunity to become part of a vibrant advocacy program as a Post-Doctoral Teaching Fellow.  This Fellowship in Advocacy provides the opportunity to earn a Masters of Law Degree in Lawyering (LLM). Fellows will develop new skills in the art of advocacy, learn to teach advocacy, and learn how to train others in these skills as well as in substantive areas of law. Our Fellows play a vital role in continuing to build a premier national advocacy program as they significantly enhance their own advocacy skills.

Fellows will teach or co-teach trial advocacy classes and may teach Evidence and other substantive courses as needed, coach and directly supervise students in competitions, and actively participate in the Mastery of Advocacy course and other clinical opportunities. Duties will involve course planning, creation, development, preparation, and instruction. Fellows will be engaged, collegial, and cooperative members of the Advocacy and law school communities, bringing Advocacy insights and opportunities to other departments upon request or need. Fellows will also help coordinate internal and external trial and appellate competitions and externships in the community as well as foster excellent working relationships with the local bar and judiciary.  The National Voir Dire Advocacy Competition (Show-Me Challenge), created here at UMKC, is a vital part of the program and presents significant additional opportunities for the Teaching Fellow.

This full-time Fellowship is a contractual appointment for up to two years and includes tuition assistance toward fifteen hours of the LL.M. degree and opportunities for course work, research, writing, and scholarship during the Fellowship term.  

Requirements for the position include membership in good standing in the Bar of at least one state and the academic and professional credentials to be admitted to the LL.M. in Lawyering. Qualifications include: excellent speaking, leadership, organizational, and motivational skills; familiarity with law school advocacy teams, strong academic record and/or other indicia of high performance ability; a strong interest in teaching and an overall commitment to excellence and results as well as building reputation in the local and national communities.   Prior coaching experience is preferred.

Salary is $40,000-45,000/year, depending on qualifications. The position includes full benefits, including health insurance and CLE requirements. Advocacy teaching and coaching occurs in the fall and spring semesters, affording opportunity during the summer for planning and research.

UMKC School of Law is the urban law school of the University of Missouri System and is located on a beautiful landscaped campus in the Country Club Plaza area of Kansas City, Missouri, a vibrant metropolitan area of more than two million people. UMKC offers courses leading to J.D. or LL.M. degrees for approximately 400 students.   

UMKC is an equal access, equal opportunity, affirmative action employer that is fully committed to achieving a diverse faculty and staff. Equal Opportunity is and shall be provided for all employees and applicants for employment on the basis of their demonstrated ability and competence without unlawful discrimination on the basis of their race, color, national origin, ancestry, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, age, genetic information, disability, or protected veteran status. For more information, call the Vice Chancellor – Human Resources at 816-235-1621. To request ADA accommodations, please call the Office of Affirmative Action at 816-235-1323.  

Applicants must apply through the UMKC’s Human Resources website: http://www.umkc.edu/hr/career-opportunities/default.asp. Applicants must combine all application materials (cover letter, resume, and list of at least three references) into one PDF or Microsoft Word document and upload as a resume attachment. Limit document name to 50 characters. Maximum size limit is 11MB. Do not include special characters (e.g., /, &, %, etc.). Fellows will be required to submit official transcript of their J.D. degree or a certificate of good standing showing an active license to practice law prior to appointment. If you are experiencing technical problems, please call (855) 524-0002.    
Inquiries may be sent to:  
Professor Michaelle Tobin
UMKC School of Law
500 E. 52nd St.
Kansas City, MO 64110 tobinl@umkc.edu  
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Gender Discrimination (Just Less of It) Still Ok in Virginia as #TamponTax is Cut But Not Repealed

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Half measures, Virginia. Any tax on menstrual hygiene products is gender discrimination, Professor Emily Waldman and I argue in our article The Unconstitutional Tampon Tax. So cutting the tampon tax lessens the discrimination but fails to eliminate it.

From the (Virginia) Capital News Service, by Emily Holter:

The [Virginia] sales tax on tampons, diapers and other personal hygiene products will be reduced by more than half beginning Jan. 1, 2020.

Gov. Ralph Northam announced Wednesday that he has signed SB 1715, sponsored by Sen. Jennifer Boysko, D-Fairfax, and HB 2540, proposed by Del. Kathy Byron, R-Lynchburg. The bills will lower the retail sales and use tax rate on essential personal hygiene products to 2.5 percent. * * *

The new law will apply to feminine hygiene products and nondurable incontinence products including diapers and other materials.

We know that menstrual supplies and diapers are necessary to leave home for work, school, and social activities,” said Boysko, who called her bill the Dignity Act. “I am so glad we have made progress on the issue of menstrual equity and at long last will have tax relief for these products that women and families have to purchase.”

The law will make these products subject to the state’s reduced sales tax of 1.5 percent, which currently applies only to food. In addition, local governments add a 1 percent sales tax on such purchases.

Boysko had wanted to remove the so-called “tampon tax” entirely. Byron pushed for a compromise on grounds that a tax exemption for personal hygiene products would have a big effect on the state budget.

Why should a state balance its budget on the literal bodies of women and infants?

Relevant Twitter handles include @GovernorVA (for Virginia Governor Ralph Northam), @JenniferBoysko (for State Senator Jennifer Boysko) and @kathybyron (State Delegate State Senator Kathy Byron).

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CFP: Fordham Urban L.J. Issue on Gender Violence and the Law

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From colleagues at Fordham:

The Fordham Urban Law Journal is accepting articles for its Volume 47, October 2019 Issue.  The Journal publishes themed issues. The upcoming issue focuses on Gender Violence and the Law. Here’s the CFP:

The Fordham Urban Law Journal has a strong history of addressing legal and public policy issues affecting urban populations across the nation and throughout the world.  The Journal is second-oldest publication and the most-cited specialty journal at Fordham Law School.  Further, the Journal is the second-most cited public policy law journal edited by students in the country, and is one of the few journals publishing articles directly related to urban justice and policy.

This Fall 2019 Issue will focus on the varied aspects of gender violence and the law, such as the effectiveness of legislation in addressing this issue, the way that courts provide both a path to safety and a retraumatizing experience for survivors, and how legal strategies address gender motivated violence.  Some appropriate topics for this Issue include intimate-partner violence; orders of protection; domestic homicide; prostitution; rape; and sex trafficking of women and children.  This list is in no way exhaustive, and the Journal invites you to submit any article you believe deserves attention.

Articles can be submitted through online platforms, such as Scholastica or Express-O, or by email directly to mtracy1@law.fordham.edu.  Should you have any other inquiries, questions or concerns, please reach out to Maura Tracy, Senior Articles Editor, at mtracy1@law.fordham.edu

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Updated Guide to Submitting Essays, Commentaries, Reviews to Online Law Review Companions

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I’ve expanded my guide to submitting to online companions to include 50 schools’ law reviews.  The new guide is here on SSRN.  The chart with contains details on the mechanics of submitting essays, commentaries, reviews to the online presence of journals at 50+ schools.

For now, the document contains information about word count limitations, subject matter preferences, submission details and other guidelines authors may find relevant when considering sending their work to law review presences online.

Details vary widely from journal to journal. Not all journals accept unsolicited contributions.

Corrections, additions, refinements to this chart are very welcome. (If for any reason the link doesn’t work because the submission hasn’t been reviewed yet by SSRN, you can navigate to it via my SSRN page here.

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CFP: ClassCrits XII Conference

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Call for Panel and Paper Proposals

ClassCrits XII: 

Facing Our Challenges: Rescuing Democracy, Ensuring Wellbeing & Exorcizing the Politics of Fear (Or: How To Be Free) 

Co-Sponsored by 

Western New England University School of Law 

and ClassCrits, Inc.

www.classcrits.org

November 15 & 16, 2019

ClassCrits and Western New England University School of Law invite interested scholars, practitioners and advanced degree students to consider submitting a panel or a paper proposal for the upcoming ClassCrits XII Conference that will be held between Friday, November 15 and Saturday, November 16, 2019, at Western New England University School of Law in Springfield, Massachusetts, entitled Facing Our Challenges: Rescuing Democracy, Ensuring Wellbeing & Exorcizing the Politics of Fear (Or: How To Be Free).

This year, ClassCrits seeks the mantle of the FREE. To be free requires that we actively face the challenges that all humanity now jointly confronts. These include the accelerating environmental degradation of the Earth’s natural systems, the dramatic rise in economic inequality, the failure of our institutions, the breakdown of our communities, and the alienation from our selves (body, mind and spirit) and one another. However, these challenges cannot be met unless we rescue or even reinvent our democracy, ensure the wellbeing of all as the appropriate measure of justice, and exorcize the politics of fear.  In this vein, ClassCrits seeks ideas, work, activities and practices that: (1) analyze and propose concrete solutions to the existential threats to humanity and planet Earth; (2) demand expansive democracy and justice; (3) embrace and seek to ensure the economic wellbeing of all across our differences; and (4) inspire courage and solidarity.

For more information about ClassCrits XII and the submission of proposals, please contact www.classcrits.org.


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Are “CupAware” Events the New Tupperware Parties? Women’s Bodies as a Source of Corporate Profit

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I read with interest ‘We’re Having a Menstrual Liberation’: How Periods Got Woke, published in The Guardian (U.K.). It’s a clunky and awkward title that obscures the contents of the article.  

I am sitting in a hotel meeting room with 12 women, all of us squeezing menstrual cups against our cheeks. The blinds are down, the wine has been flowing for the past hour, and after a few people have taken selfies… Mandu Reid, an expert in “cupography”…goes on to demonstrate some of the best positions for inserting a cup – sitting on the edge of a toilet seat “manspreading”, standing with one leg up on the toilet seat (her own favourite), or lying down with your legs in the air, a pose she holds while we take pictures for social media. “The most important thing is for you to be relaxed. Put on some jazz, light some candles,” she jokes.

This is a CupAware party, designed to get women together to talk about menstrual cups. It couldn’t be more different from the last bit of menstrual education I received, when I was 12 and the “Tampax lady” came into my school in her navy blazer and gave out freebies. * * * 

Reid is part of a new wave of period activists, determined to challenge the status quo of our flows. Despite being part of the lives of half the global population, there has been little innovation or big thinking around periods in 80 years – since the tampon was invented. Recently, however, there has been a flurry of activity, from campaigns to petitions, product launches to new advertising imagery.

You can read the full article here.

Are “Cup Aware” parties the Tupperware parties of the 21st century? I’m all for menstral health, sustainable menstrual hygiene products, and ending period taboos. But I can’t help but notice that messages about embracing one’s body all seem to … be associated with selling a product. I call this mix of feminist messaging and period positivity #menstrualcapitalism. It’s not inherently bad–just something to notice.

And I’m not a fan of the article’s title because the word “woke,” with its origins in African-American activism, is being used by mainstream media for all sorts of purposes without any recognition of the history behind the word. 
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Formal Equality on (Literal) Paper: Why Does the Man’s Name Go First on German Tax Returns?

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The German publication Zeit Online recently published an article (here) critiquing a variety of gender disparities in German law. One that caught my eye was this discussion of the literal design of German tax forms:

Frauen werden in Familienbüchern und Heiratsurkunden an zweiter Stelle genannt. Genauso in der Einkommensteuererklärung – selbst wenn die Frau Hauptverdienerin ist. Das sorgte kürzlich für Aufsehen: Eine Hamburgerin trug sich als erste steuerpflichtige Person in der Kategorie «Ehemann» ein – und ihren Mann als zweites. Im Finanzamt mussten die Daten händisch umtragen werden – was den Steuerbescheid für die Familie verzögerte. Der Mann forderte viel kommentiert im Internet modernere Formulare. Das für die Software zuständige Landesamt für Steuern in Bayern betonte, die bundesweit vorgegebene Reihenfolge sei Zufall und keine Wertung.

My German isn’t great, but loosely translated (with some help from the Google machine) here’s what I can make out:

Women are named second in family books and on marriage certificates. Likewise in the income tax return – even if the woman is the main earner. This recently caused a stir: a woman from Hamburg recently listed herself on the tax return first, in the category “husband.” Her husband was listed second, in the category “wife.” The tax office was required to process the form manually, delaying the family’s tax assessment. This filing was consistent with a demand, the subject of much cyber-commentary, for more modern tax forms. The State Tax Office in Bavaria, which is responsible for the tax filing software, emphasized that the sequence of spousal names was a coincidence and not a value judgment or hierarchy.

Seems to me it would be pretty easy to have the prompt read “Spouse 1” and “Spouse 2.” I actually think that forms of communication and information transmission, including legal forms, matter. If a same-sex couple has children who need school permission slips signed, it’s quite different if the school request’s a “parent’s” signature, versus requiring a signature and then asking the signatory to check off “mother” or “father” to indicate the relation with the student.

Similarly, it matters if forms like tax forms only ask for married couples’ names by prompting response for “name of husband” and “name of wife,” in any order. Let the couple decide who wants to be listed first. It’t not that difficult to make the design change, and signals broader inclusivity.

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NPR’s @PlanetMoney Podcast on the #TamponTax

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On March 6, 2019, NPR’s Planet Money had a show Tampons: That Bloody Sales Tax that included an interview with attorney Zoe Salzman, talking about her work that contributed to New York’s repeal of the sales tax on menstrual hygiene products. Currently, 35 states retain some form of the tampon tax, although many states are expected to consider repeal legislation in the near future.

Professor Emily Gold Waldman and I have argued in The Unconstitutional Tampon Tax, 53 U. Richmond L. Rev. 339 (2019), that the sales tax on menstrual hygiene products violates the Equal Protection Clause. Professor Carla Spivack and I have explained in Tampon Taxes, Discrimination and Human Rights, 2017 Wisc. L. Rev. 491, how the value added tax and sales tax on menstrual hygiene products also implicate a variety of human rights, and might be ripe for challenge in an international tribunal.

The NPR podcast also featured comments from Nicole Kaeding of the Tax Foundation. She represented a voice in favor of retention of the tampon tax and widening the tax base generally.

You know, in my view, a state would be much better off to have a broad sales tax that applies to, you know, all final consumption. You avoid these sorts of, you know, picking between different product classes. It would make for a much more efficient sales tax.

Tax scholar Miranda Stewart (Melbourne) has made similar arguments (here). I don’t disagree that it would be reasonable (and non-discriminatory) to remove all sales tax exemptions, but I also think that such a change is politically both unfeasible–no one will want to give up tax exemptions on medicine, for example–and undesirable, because it is regressive.

But glad to see more press coverage of the issue in any event.

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Guide to Submitting Shorter Work to Online Law Review Companions

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If you are doing any shorter writing — essays, responses, commentaries — you may be interested in this short guide I developed for submitting work to the online presences of 20 main journals. Some of the online companions are more active than others; some publish only responses to work published in their print edition; some publish only invited pieces; many publish a range of work (but not a huge range of words).

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Caterine on Gender & Bankruptcy

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Emma Caterine, a 2018 graduate of CUNY Law School, has posted to SSRN her article A Fresh Start for a Women’s Economy: Beyond Punitive Consumer Bankruptcy, 33 Berkeley J. of Gender, Law & Justice (2018). Here is the abstract:

This article explores the gendering of modern consumerism through the lens of Chapter 7 bankruptcy. The changes made by the 2005 Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act (BAPCPA) expose that the punitive nature of bankruptcy falls disproportionately on the same women who keep capitalism in motion with their purchases – the danger of this contradiction could cause a downturn for the entire economy.

Despite Elizabeth Warren breaking the glass ceiling of analyzing economic law through the lens of gender, economic legal theory remains dominated by those who neglect or even disdain feminist critical theory being applied to subjects like bankruptcy. By combining cultural analysis, legal theory, and macroeconomics, this article maintains the rigor of empiricism while centering the law in the consequences it has on marginalized communities. Now that it has been more than a decade since the passage of the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act (BAPCPA) and will soon be a decade since the start of the Great Recession, there is enough data to begin to empirically parse out the effects of BAPCPA. This article is a humble beginning to this endeavor, tracing where BAPCPA has taken the country and what changes need to be made to redirect the country onto a path towards an economy by and for women.

The full paper is available here.

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State Legislature Watch: #Tampon Tax Repeal Bills Live in 13 States

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In upcoming legislative sessions, state legislatures in these 13 states are poised to consider bills to repeal the sales tax on menstrual hygiene products:

  • Arizona
  • California
  • Georgia
  • Kentucky
  • Maine
  • Michigan
  • Nebraska
  • Ohio
  • Tennessee
  • Texas
  • Virginia
  • Washington
  • West Virginia

States that already have no sales tax (at all) are:

  • Alaska
  • New Hampshire
  • Oregon
  • Delaware
  • Montana

States that have a general sales tax, but provide an exemption for products from are:

  • Connecticut
  • Florida
  • Illinois
  • Maryland
  • Massachusetts
  • Minnesota
  • Nevada
  • New Jersey
  • Pennsylvania
  • New York

The District of Columbia also exempts menstrual hygiene products from sales tax.

If eleven of the states considering repeal do, in fact, pass the legislation, sales tax exemption for menstrual hygiene products will be the majority position in the states.

I’ll be watching these state bills carefully.

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Rethinking the Online Petition: Not “Slactivism”

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From TheConversation.com (here):

Online petitions are often seen as a form of “slacktivism” – small acts that don’t require much commitment and are more about helping us feel good than effective activism. But the impacts of online petitions can stretch beyond immediate results. * * * 

The simplest way to gauge if a petition has been successful is to look at whether the requests made were granted. The front page of Change.org displays recent “victories”. These including a call to axe the so-called “tampon tax” (the GST on menstrual products) which states and territories agreed to remove come January 2019.

Change.org also boasts the petition for gender equality on cereal boxes as a victory, after Kelloggs sent a statement they would be updating their packaging in 2019 to include images of males and females. This petition only had 600 signatures, in comparison to the 75,000 against the tampon tax. * * * 

Knowing a few characteristics of successful petitions can be useful when you’re deciding whether it’s worth your time to sign and share something. Firstly, there should be a target and specific call for action.

These can take many forms: petitions might request a politician vote “yes” on a specific law, demand changes to working conditions at a company, or even ask an advocacy organisation to begin campaigning around a new issue. Vague targets and unclear goals aren’t well suited to petitions. Calls for “more gender equality in society” or “better rights for pets”, for example, are unlikely to achieve success. 

Secondly, the goal needs to be realistic. This is so it’s possible to succeed and so supporters feel a sense of optimism. Petitioning for a significant change in a foreign government’s policy – for example, a call from world citizens for better gun control in the US – is unlikely to lead to results. * * * 

Thirdly, and perhaps most importantly, a petition’s chance of success depends largely on the strength of community supporting it. Petitions rarely work on their own. In her book Twitter and Teargas, Turkish writer Zeynep Tufekci argues the internet allows us to organise action far more quickly than in the past, outpacing the hard but essential work of community organising.

We can get thousands of people signing a petition and shouting in the streets well before we build coalitions and think about long-term strategies. But the most effective petitions will work in combination with other forms of activism.

The full piece is here.

Lots of food for thought in this piece, but a few questions/thoughts come to mind:

What does it tell us about online petitions that the tampon tax repeal petitions are cited as the most “successful”?  Does it tell us something about the substance of the petition (that people are really, really fired up about the tax? That tax is a lens that makes gender inequality salient, and when people learn about it, they are willing to sign their names indicating opposition?  

Does the success (or failure) of online petitions reflect “what it takes” for women or other historically disadvantaged groups to be heard?  If so, what does that say about the health of the particular legal, social and political contexts in which the petition launches?

What are the demographics of the people behind successful online petitions?  Certainly, some of the them are grass-roots.  Others have corporate co-sponsors.  The popular US-based Stop Taxing Our Periods. Period. campaign, the brainchild of the brilliant and creative Jennifer Weiss-Wolf, was co-sponsored by Cosmopolitan Magazine. Nothing wrong with that; lots of good with that.  But what role did Cosmo‘s participation have in the petition’s success? What are the chances of petitions’ success without a successful partnership with a mainstream publication, group or other outlet? 

-Bridget Crawford

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Kathy Stanchi (@kstanchi) from Temple Law to @UNLVLaw

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Kathryn M. Stanchi

Fab feminist Kathryn M. Stanchi, currently the Jack E. Feinberg ’57 Professor of Litigation and an Affiliated Professor of Gender, Sexuality and Women’s Studies at Temple University Beasley School of Law, will be joining the faculty of the UNLV William S. Boyd School of Law, beginning with the 2019-2020 academic year. At UNLV, she will be the E.L. Cord Foundation Professor of Law.

Many of you may know Kathy as the principal convener of the U.S. Feminist Judgments Project, her work with various sections of the AALS, including the Section on Women in Legal Education, and her feminist scholarship around rhetoric and advocacy.  Kathy’s addition to the faculty is fantastic for UNLV, a school that already has a strong faculty and a super roster of feminist colleagues including Rachel Anderson, Linda Berger, Frank Rudy Cooper, Leslie Griffin, Kay Kindred, Sylvia Lazos, Francine Lipman, Elizabeth MacDowell, Ann McGinley, and Nancy Rapoport.

Congratulations, Kathy!

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Nello Restaurant in NYC Won’t Let Women Eat Alone at the Bar

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Dining solo while female can get you banned from the bar.  I am not making this up.

On a recent trip to Manhattan, [business executive Clementine Crawford] said she visited Nello for an early dinner and took her usual place at the bar, but was quickly confronted by an “oddly hesitant” waiter who informed her that she was “no longer permitted to eat” at the bar and “must now sit down at a table.” Crawford was tired from her flight, so obliged without thinking. But she said the same thing happened when she returned to the restaurant a few days later.

More details here, here and here.

(By way of information, I am not related to the woman in the story.)

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Joshi on “Racial Indirection”

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Yuraj Joshi (doctoral candidate and SSHRC fellow at Yale Law School) has posted to SSRN his article, “Racial Indirection,” forthcoming in the Davis Law Review. Here is the abstract:

Racial indirection describes practices that produce racially disproportionate results without the overt use of race. This Article demonstrates how racial indirection has allowed — and may continue to allow — efforts to desegregate America’s universities. By analyzing the Supreme Court’s affirmative action cases, the Article shows how specific features of affirmative action doctrine have required and incentivized racial indirection, and how these same features have helped sustain the constitutionality of affirmative action to this point. The Article then discusses the potential benefits and costs of adopting indirection in affirmative action, and describes disagreements among Justices about the value of indirection that do not track along the usual ideological lines. Finally, in light of the rightward shift on the Court and the litigation over Harvard’s admissions program, the Article expects affirmative action not to disappear but to be driven underground — with ever less conspicuous considerations of race.

The full article is available here.

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CFP: “Law, the Body and Embodiment: Contemporary and Historical Perspectives,” Austl. Feminist L.J. @austfem

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Dr.  Linda Roland Danil is guest-editing a special issue of the Australian Feminist Law Journal entitled: ‘Law, the Body and Embodiment: Contemporary and Historical Perspectives’ for the Australian Feminist Law Journal, Volume 46(1) 2020. Abstracts are due on March 31, 2019. Here’s the info:

This special issue wishes to foreground the body and embodiment in relation to the law, from both contemporary and historical perspectives. In so doing, this CFP invites contributions that consider the following, but not exclusively: what is the relationship between law and the body, and law and embodiment? How does the law preclude, encourage, marginalize, or stratify particular kinds of embodiment, if at all – and how are particular kinds of embodiment gendered, sexed, classed and/or racialized? What role does culture play in relation to law and the body, and vice-versa? What are the embodied consequences of particular legal decisions, and vice-versa, how might modes of embodied resistance lead to legal change? What are the multiple and varied relationships between the body and the law, and their mutually constitutive, interdependent relationship? How autonomous can we truly be in relation to our bodies, before the law steps in? What effects can the law directly or indirectly cause on the body, and what are the embodied consequences of such decisions/omissions? What theoretical or methodological perspectives can enhance or enrich our understanding of the relationship between law and the body, and law and embodiment?

This CFP therefore invites contributions that relate, but by all means are not limited to:

Organ donation
Human bodily material
Prosthetics
Cosmetic surgery
Gender re-assignment
Human trafficking
Torture
Degenerative diseases
Offences Against the Person
Contact sports
Elective amputation
Corporal punishment

Articles of 8,000 to 10,000 words.

Deadlines:

Submission of abstracts: 31st of March 2019

Decision of acceptance: by 7 April 2019

Submission of full-length articles: 1st of June 2019

More details are here. For queries or the submission of abstracts, contact Dr. Linda Roland Danil at: lindarolandd@gmail.com

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Oñati Socio-Legal Series @IISJOnati Volume on “Comparative Socio-Legal Perspectives on Judicial Decision Making and Gender Justice”

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In May, 2017, I participated in a fantastic international workshop at the Oñati International Institute for the Sociology of Law in Spain. The workshop brought together participants from the various international Feminist Judgments Projects. Collectively, these projects focus on rewriting judicial opinions from a feminist perspective using the same law and facts in existence at the time the initial case was decided. Projects in Canada, England, Australia, the U.S., Ireland and New Zealand have resulted in published volumes of rewritten judgments. There are ongoing projects devoted to international law, as well as the law of Scotland, India and Mexico.

The first U.S. book focused on rewriting decisions of the United States Supreme Court. It inspired a series of subject-matter specific books. Feminist Judgments: Rewritten Tax Opinions was published by Cambridge University Press in 2017. There are volumes at various stages of development devoted to U.S. law in the areas of torts, employment discrimination, reproductive justice, family law, health law, and trusts & estates.

The May 2017 in-person meeting of representatives of the various jurisdictional projects resulted in the publication of a thought-provoking set of papers (edited by Linda Berger, Kathy Stanchi and me). All papers went through a double-blind peer review process with two external referees, which was a new (and positive) experience for me as an editor. All of the papers are open-access.  Here’s the table of contents (with links to papers):

The Oñati Socio-Legal Series Vol 8, No 9 (2018): Feminist Judgments: Comparative Socio-legal Perspectives on Judicial Decision Making and Gender Justice

Issue edited by Linda L. Berger (University of Nevada Las Vegas, USA), Bridget J. Crawford (Pace University, New York, USA), and Kathryn M. Stanchi (Temple University, Philadelphia, USA).

Introduction

Feminist Judgments: Comparative Socio-Legal Perspectives on Judicial Decision Making and Gender Justice
Linda L. Berger, Bridget J. Crawford, Kathryn M. Stanchi

Part I: Methods in the Feminist Judgments Projects

Collaboration as Feminist Methodology: Experiences from the Feminist International Judgments Project
Loveday Hodson
Accessing Court Files as a Feminist Endeavour: Reflections on ‘Feminist Judgments of Aotearoa – Te Rino: A Two-Stranded Rope’
Elisabeth McDonald, Paulette Benton-Greig
Women’s Court of Canada Act and Rules
Melina Buckley

Part II: Measuring the Impact of Feminist Judgments

Feminist Judging in the ‘Real World’
Rosemary Hunter
Turning Feminist Judgments into Jurisprudence: The Women’s Court of Canada on Substantive Equality
Denise Réaume
Impact of the Feminist Judgment Writing Projects: The Case of the Women’s Court of Canada
Jennifer Koshan

Part III: The Reach of Feminist Judgments

‘Benchmarking’ a Supreme Court and Federal Court judge in Australia
Francesca Bartlett, Heather Douglas
The Scottish Feminist Judgments Project: A New Frontier
Sharon Cowan

cross-post from The Faculty Lounge (here)

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Gloria Steinem’s Career in Pictures + Essay by Rebecca Carroll @rebel19

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The New York Times is featuring on its website various collections of curated historical photographs.  This week’s collection (here) includes an essay by Rebecca Carroll: “What I See: Gloria Steinem Shoulder to Shoulder with Women of Color.”

Here is an excerpt from Ms. Carroll’s essay:

I have struggled with trust in my interactions with white women. This is among the topics I’m exploring in depth in my upcoming memoir, “Surviving the White Gaze.” So it is no small thing for me to say that Gloria Steinem, not so much the icon as the woman, is among the very few I trust resolutely, instinctively and without conflict or concern. And this was before I saw these archival photographs.

The Times’s archives are rich with pictures of Gloria. They weren’t edited to reflect a certain truth, and yet the truth of the images is evident. Photograph after photograph of Gloria show her with so many of the black women she worked with during the 1970s — Florynce Kennedy, Evelyn Cunningham, Eleanor Holmes Norton, Jane Galvin-Lewis, Shirley Chisholm, Fannie Lou Hamer — wherein we see the embodiment of intersectional feminism. In each photo, there is ease and intent, focus and fury and, perhaps above all, a nearly palpable, unprompted sense of racial solidarity that makes me wonder why it’s still so hard for us to get it right today.

The essay and photos are worth a look!

Rebecca Carroll is on Twitter @rebel19. She is the author of several books including Saving the Race: Conversations on Du Bois from Collective Memoir of Souls and Sugar in the Raw: Voice of Young Black Girls in America. More info on Ms. Carroll’s work is available at her website here.

 

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Upcoming Women in Legal Ed Events at AALS in New Orleans

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The AALS Section on Women in Legal Education has some great programs planned for the 2019 Annual Meeting:

Thursday, January 3

10:30-12:15 Co-Sponsoring with the Section on Agricultural and Food Law: Worker Justice in the Food System.

Friday, January 4

8:30-10:15 Building Bridges with Shared Experiences: The Women in Legal Education Oral History Project. Business meeting will be held at the end of the session.

For the past four to five years, a small group of Women in Legal Education Section Members, led by Professor Marie Failinger (Mitchell Hamline School of Law), have been recording oral histories of the women in the legal academy. The Oral History Project’s goal is to gather the stories of as many women in the academy as possible to develop a robust library of histories that can be used for research, study, or enjoyment. More than 40 women have been interviewed as of January 2018. In this session, panelists will explain the Oral History Project and share thoughts, reactions, and experiences, as we show clips from the Oral History Project about decisions that led women into the legal academy, often at a time where there were few women on law faculties.

12:15-1:30 Women in Legal Education Luncheon and Presentation of the 2019 Ruth Bader Ginsburg Lifetime Achievement Award to Chancellor Phoebe Haddon. This is a ticketed event; please purchase your ticket in advance.

1:30-3:15 Hot Topic Program: Civil Rights in the Aftermath of the Kavanaugh Hearings and Confirmation.

The Senate Judiciary Committee’s September 27, 2018 hearing concerning Dr. Christine Blasey Ford’s allegations that U.S. Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh committed assault upon her person proved a watershed political and jurisprudential moment. We have now learned of Justice Kavanaugh’s positions on reproductive freedoms, immigrant rights, presidential power, and female testimonial credibility, which may well transform the protections afforded by the Due Process and Equal Protection Clauses and the Civil Rights Act. Furthermore, his performance at the September 27 hearing triggers issues about judicial temperament, ethics, and even the judge’s role as a creator of legal and social truth.

In this Hot Topic Panel, legal scholars will address the ways in which Justice Kavanaugh’s nomination, hearings, and confirmation impact a wide variety of legal domains, including sexual harassment and assault laws, workplace equality, policing, substantive and criminal law, administrative law, the field of judicial ethics, and the standards of proof appropriate for criminal, legal, and political processes. We will also engage the ways in which Justice Kavanaugh’s role in today’s political and legal climate intersects with jurisprudence, such as critical legal feminism and the moral theory of epistemic injustice.
1:30-3:15 Co-Sponsoring with the Section on Aging and the Law: The Legal Consequences of Living a Long Life: The Differential Impact on Marginalized Communities.

Saturday, January 5

1:30-3:15 Building Bridges: WiLE Networking, Mentoring, and Discussion.

This is a reboot of our Speed Mentoring session. This session will give us an opportunity to have focused discussion as well as more informal discussion about topics that impact all of us and our students and colleagues. The primary discussion topics grew out of the discussion on our Section’s Listserv this past fall in the wake of the Kavanaugh hearings. We have four primary goals for this session:

1.  To address the meaning of the hearings for session participants in their roles as legal academics, lawyers, citizens, and for some, survivors of harassment or assault;
2.  To reveal challenges the participants faced in occupying those roles and charting a path forward;
3.  To mentor one another by sharing strategies that enabled the participants to cope with the challenges posed; and
4. To provide a forum to network and form alliances in the wake of an event in American political history, which galvanized the country and the legal academy.

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Ohio House of Representatives Votes to Repeal Tampon Tax

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Ohio Senate (image from http://www.ohiosenate.gov)

Today the Ohio House of Representatives voted 84-1 to eliminate the state sales tax on menstrual hygiene products.  House Bill 545, a larger tax bill, had significant bipartisan support. The bill included the exemption for menstrual hygiene products contained in HB 61, legislation proposed in February, 2017 by State Representative Brigid Kelly (D-Cincinnati) and former State Representative Greta Johnson (D-Akron).

Here’s an excerpt from today’s press release from Representative Kelly’s office:

“Eliminating the tampon tax will put more money into the pockets of women, in-turn strengthening the families they support and nurture,” said Kelly. “I am thankful we were able to come together to even the playing field for women, girls and families on medically necessary products. No one should face extra economic challenges simply because of their gender.”

Not only does taxing menstruation-control products present economic issues for women and families, but also potential health consequences. Without proper feminine hygiene products such as tampons and pads, women are at risk of developing health complications such as vaginal infections, disease and even infertility. The medicine prescribed to treat these problems is tax exempt, but the products that can prevent them are not.

“The percentage of working women in Ohio is growing, but they still face burdensome costs that men do not,” said Kelly. “I hope that during the next General Assembly, we can continue working on policies that ensure no one in Ohio is left behind.”

According to a fiscal analysis from the Legislative Service Commission, Ohio women give the state nearly $4 million in annual taxes from purchasing medically necessary feminine hygiene products. If HB 545 is signed into law, Ohio would join 15 other states embarking on the tampon tax push to exempt feminine products from sales tax.

The bill now moves to the Senate for further consideration.

The bill is especially timely given that there is active class action litigation in Ohio seeking elimination of the tax on menstrual hygiene products and retroactive relief from tax paid in prior years.

All eyes on the Ohio Senate!

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CFP: 21st Annual Women’s History Conference at Sarah Lawrence College – Intersectional Activism in the Age of Gender Based Violence and Authoritarian Oppression

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Call for Proposals
21st Annual Women’s History Conference at Sarah Lawrence College

The Struggle Continues:
Intersectional Activism in the Age of Gender-Based Violence and Authoritarian Oppression

Friday-Saturday March 1-2, 2019
Sarah Lawrence College in Bronxville, NY (20 Minutes North of Manhattan)
Free and Open to the Public

Deadline for Proposals: December 14, 2018

Recent high profile legal battles in the U.S. have brought attention to the problems of sexual assault and violence against women. These include the arrest of Hollywood film producer Harvey Weinstein, the conviction and prison sentence of comedian Bill Cosby, and the battle over the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh for the Supreme Court. Activism against gender based violence has become the focus of attention by both NGO’s and local organizations resulting in social movements like #Sayhername and #MeToo. These concerns are also not isolated to the U.S. Movements in India, Kenya, China and the UK have amplified the voices of victims of individual and state sponsored violence.

Intersectionality, a term first theorized by feminist activist and legal scholar Kimberlé Crenshaw, was based on the previous work of Black women in organizations such as the Combahee River Collective and the Third World Women’s Alliance. These activists by foregrounding the notion of “simultaneous oppressions” gave voice to the frustrations surrounding the inability of feminist and anti-racist activists to consider the intersections of oppression that women of color faced. Crenshaw saw intersectionality as a tool to address failures within those movements. It is through Crenshaw’s framework that we seek to interrogate global gendered violence, now and in the past.

The 21st annual women’s history conference, will explore the struggle against global gender based violence through the lens of intersectionality. We seek papers, presentations, and creative works that explore the following questions:

What are the structural and systemic factors that produce gender based violence and how do race, class, gender, ability and orientation inform them? What are the ways in which gender based violence has been used by the state and how have activists addressed these crimes or attempted to force governments to do so? What are the successes and mistakes of past movements to end gender based violence and what lessons can current activists take from previous movements? How can we overcome intersectional failures, to unify and build stronger, more robust coalitions?

We invite scholars, artists, writers, and activists to submit proposals for papers, readings, workshops, and performances.

Proposals may include but are not limited to the following subjects:

  • #Sayhername, #Metoo and Other Movements on Behalf of Victims of Abuse: An Intersectional Perspective
  • Sexual Assault and Women of Color in History and Now
  • Intersections of Race, Class, and Gendered Violence
  • Historical Perspectives on Gendered Violence
  • Women as Targets in Authoritarian Regimes
  • Rape as a Tool of War
  • Work Place Policies
  • Title IX and Sex Based Harassment
  • Legal Responses to Violence and Sexual Harassment
  • Violence Against Transgender and Non-Binary People
  • Gendered Violence as a Public Health Crisis
  • Sexual Exploitation of Domestic Workers
  • Current and Past Gendered Violence and Incarceration
  • Social Media, it’s Uses and Abuses with Regard to Sexual Harassment and Gendered Violence
  • Gendered Violence and the Criminal Justice System

Proposals should include a description of each presentation, no more than one page per person, and a brief C.V. for each presenter. Proposals for panels are especially welcomed but we will also consider individual papers. Email submissions are preferred.

Deadline: December 14, 2018

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Visiting Positions at IU-McKinney

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From colleagues at IU-McKinney:

Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law will be hiring visitors for the 2019-2020 academic year. Please forward to anyone who may be interested. Please see the announcement below:

Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law invites entry-level and experienced applicants for one or more visiting professorships for the 2019-2020 academic year in the following areas: Contracts and Sales, Health Law, Property, Tax, and Trusts and Estates.

Indiana University prohibits discrimination based on arbitrary considerations of such characteristics as age, color, disability, ethnicity, sex, gender identity, marital status, national origin, race, religion, sexual orientation, or veteran status. The University is committed to taking affirmative action, positive and extraordinary, to overcome the discriminatory effects of traditional policies and procedures with regard to the disabled, minorities, women, and veterans. For more information about the school, please visit http://indylaw.indiana.edu/.

Interested candidates should submit a CV and cover letter to Vice Dean Mike Pitts at mjpitts@iupui.edu. Individuals who require a reasonable accommodation in order to participate in the application process should give Vice Dean Pitts adequate notice. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis with January 15 as the deadline for all applications.

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Dargis on What the Movies Taught Me About Being a Woman @ManohlaDargis @nytimes

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Manohla Dargis discusses film and its messages for female viewers, here, in a piece for the New York Times.

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Equality Law Scholars’ Forum at UC Davis Law, Nov. 16-17, 2018

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The second annual Equality  Law Scholars’ Forum kicks off at UC Davis tomorrow.  I’m looking forward to being one of the commentators on a fantastic set of papers. Here are some details:

Second Annual Equality Law Scholars’ Forum

Friday, November 16 – Saturday November 17, 2018

The Forum is designed to provide junior scholars with commentary and critique by their more senior colleagues in the legal academy and, more broadly, to foster development and understanding of new scholarly currents across equality law.

This year, the Forum will feature six presenters (chosen from over forty submissions):

The New Coverture, Albertina Antognini (Arizona College of Law)

Stealing Education: Protecting Racial Capital in “White” Schools, LaToya Baldwin Clark (UCLA School of Law)

Affirmative Action Misclassification, Jonathan Feingold (UCLA Office of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion)

The Aesthetics of Disability Law, Jasmine Harris (UC Davis School of Law)

Legislating with Tall Tales, Goldburn Maynard (U. of Louisville School of Law)

 Diversity to Deradicalize: A New Theory for How Affirmative Action Became Tied to Intellectual Pluralism, Asad Rahim (American Bar Foundation)

The event is co-organized by Tristin Green, USF Law, Angela Onwuachi-Willig, UC Berkeley Law, and Leticia Saucedo, UC Davis Law.

Comment and critique will be provided by the following scholars:

Bridget Crawford, Pace Law School

Jonathan Glater, UC Irvine Law School

Tristin Green, USF Law School

Angela Harris, UC Davis Law School

Jill Hasday, U. of Minnesota School of Law

Anthony Infanti, U. of Pittsburgh School of Law

Osamudia James, U. of Miami School of Law

Tom Joo, UC Davis Law School

Courtney Joslin, UC Davis Law School

Angela Onwuachi-Willig, Boston U. Law School

Kimani Paul-Emile, Fordham U. School of Law

Leticia Saucedo, UC Davis Law School

We will also hold a panel discussion on Producing Scholarship in Equality Law with the following UC Davis Law School panelists participating: Jack Chin, Kevin Johnson, Courtney Joslin, Tom Joo, Lisa Pruitt, and Brian Soucek.

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Harming Women with Words: The Failure of Australian Law to Prohibit Gendered Hate Speech @latrobelaw

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Tanya D’Souza, Supreme Court of Victoria, and Laura Griffin, Nicole Shackleton, and Danielle Watt, all of La Trobe Law School, have published Harming Women with Words: The Failure of Australian Law to Prohibit Gendered Hate Speech at 41 UNSW Law Journal 939 (2018). Here is the abstract.

In Australia, gendered hate speech against women is so pervasive and insidious that it is a normalised feature of everyday public discourse. It is often aimed at silencing women, and hindering their ability to participate effectively in civil society. As governmental bodies have recognised, sexist and misogynist language perpetuates gender-based violence by contributing to strict gender norms and constructing women as legitimate objects of hostility. Thus, gendered hate speech, like other forms of hate speech, produces a range of harms which ripple out beyond the targeted individual. The harmful nature of vilification is recognised by the various Australian laws which prohibit or address other forms of hate speech. But as we map out in this article, gendered hate speech is glaringly absent from most of this legislation. We argue that by failing to address gendered hate speech, Australian law permits the marginalisation of women and girls, and actively exacerbates their vulnerability to exclusion and gender-based harm.

Download the article from SSRN at the link.

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Schlesinger Library Grants Galore!

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From the FLP mailbox:

SCHLESINGER LIBRARY GRANTS

The Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America invites applicants for a variety of research grants.

The library’s special collections document over two centuries of United States history, from abolition to transgender rights. Manuscripts, books, periodicals, audiovisual material, photographs, and other objects make up the collections. These materials illuminate the lives of ordinary women as well as American icons such as suffragist Alice Paul, Harlem renaissance writer Dorothy West, civil rights activist Pauli Murray, feminist Betty Friedan, the Republican Party activist Anna Chennault, poet June Jordan, chefs Zarela Martinez, and zine author Cindy Crabb, among many more. Applications will be evaluated on the significance of the research and the project’s potential contribution to the advancement of knowledge, along with its creativity in drawing on the library’s collections. The awards may be used to cover travel and living expenses, scanning, and other incidental research expenses, but not for the purchase of durable equipment or travel to other research sites. Complete grant information and access to the application portal is available here.

RESEARCH SUPPORT GRANTS

Application Deadline: Monday, February 4, 2019

The Schlesinger Library invites scholars and other serious researchers at any career stage beyond graduate school to apply for support for their work in our collections. Grants of up to $3,000 will be given on a competitive basis. Applicants must have a doctoral degree or equivalent research and writing experience. Priority will be given to those who have demonstrated research productivity and whose projects require use of materials available only at the Schlesinger Library. The awards may be used to cover travel and living expenses, photocopies or other reproductions, and other incidental research expenses, but not for the purchase of equipment or travel to other sites for research.

Deadline: Applications must be received by Monday, February 4, 2019. Awards will be announced in early April 2019, to be used for research at the library from July 1, 2019, through June 30, 2020.

TEACHING SUPPORT GRANTS

Application Deadline: Monday, February 4, 2019

The Schlesinger Library invites secondary school teachers to apply for support for research in our collections connected to their work in the classroom. Grants of up to $3,000 will be given on a competitive basis. Priority will be given to those who have demonstrated innovative pedagogy in social studies and history, and whose proposals make a compelling case about the ways materials available only at the Schlesinger Library will be incorporated into the applicant’s curriculum plans. The awards may be used to cover travel and living expenses, photocopies or other reproductions, and other incidental research expenses, but not for the purchase of equipment or travel to other sites for research.

Deadline: Applications must be received by Monday, February 4, 2019. Awards will be announced in early April 2019, to be used for research at the library from July 1, 2019, through June 30, 2020.

DISSERTATION GRANTS

Application Deadline: Monday, February 4, 2019

The Schlesinger Library invites predoctoral scholars whose dissertation research requires use of the library’s collections to apply for research support. Grants of up to $3,000 will be given on a competitive basis. Applicants must have advanced to candidacy in a doctoral program in a relevant field and have an approved dissertation topic. Priority will be given to those whose projects require use of materials available only at the Schlesinger Library. The awards may be used to cover travel and living expenses, photocopies or other reproductions, and other incidental research expenses, but not for the purchase of equipment or travel to other sites for research.

Deadline: Applications must be received by Monday, February 4, 2019. Awards will be announced in early April 2019, to be used for research at the library from July 1, 2019, through June 30, 2020.

ORAL HISTORY GRANTS

Application Deadline: Monday, February 4, 2019

The Schlesinger Library invites scholars who are conducting oral history interviews relevant to the history of women or gender in the United States to apply for support of up to $3,000.

This grant stipulates that the interviews take place in accordance with guidelines of the Oral History Association, that consent is obtained from interviewees for their words to be viewed by researchers worldwide, and that true copies or transcripts of the original recording of the oral interviews, as well as copies of the consent forms, be deposited in the Schlesinger Library upon completion.

Deadline: See Deadlines for ALL other grants

NEW ENGLAND REGIONAL FELLOWSHIP CONSORTIUM

The New England Regional Fellowship Consortium offers grants to encourage projects that draw on the resources of 18 major cultural agencies, including Schlesinger Library. More info here.

Information for International Applicants

Schlesinger Library Grants are designed to fund research for short periods of time. Thus, international applicants need no special documentation or visa to receive a grant award and research at the library. Applicants who are eligible for ESTA Visas, or are already in the United States via green card, ESTA Visas, or an I-20 are eligible to apply.

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Notre Dame Law Review Online Symposium on “Feminist Judgments: Rewritten Opinions of the United States Supreme Court”

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The Notre Dame Law Review Online has published a Symposium featuring several essays relating to Feminist Judgments: Rewritten Opinions of the United States Supreme Court (Kathryn M. Stanchi, Linda L. Berger & Bridget J. Crawford eds., Cambridge University Press, 2016).  Here’s the table of contents for 94 Notre Dame L. Rev. Online (2018):

One useful aspect of these essays is that individuals and nonprofit institutions are able to copy or distribute any of the essays at or below cost, for educational purposes, as long as the copy includes the full citation and the copyright notice. I know that sometimes I need to direct students to models of what a short review looks like. So these essays may be useful for teaching purposes, separate and apart from their substance (which is quite thought-provoking, if I do say so myself!).

(cross post from The Faculty Lounge, here)

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Detroit Mercy Symposium CFP: Women and the Law

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From the FLP mailbox:

2019 Detroit Mercy Law Review Symposium: Women and the Law

Call for Papers and Presentations

Deadline: November 9, 2018

The Law Review at University of Detroit Mercy School of Law will be hosting its 103rd annual symposium: Women and the Law.

Call for Proposals

The Detroit Mercy Law Review is accepting proposals for the 2019 Symposium: Women and the Law. The Detroit Mercy Law Review Symposium will take place on Friday, March 8, 2019 (International Women’s Day) in Detroit, Michigan. Possible topics include, but are not limited to: the history of women in the law, how women have impacted the law, how the law impacts women today, how future legal decisions could affect women’s rights (e.g. if Roe v. Wade, 410 U.S. 113 (1973) were to be overturned), what challenges women still face in the legal profession, the role of gender in the law, and any other topic regarding women and the law.

Proposals should be approximately 250-500 words, double-spaced, and detail the proposed topic and presentation.

Submission Procedure

The deadline to submit proposals is Friday, November 9, 2018 at 5PM EST. All proposals should be submitted to Samantha Buck, Symposium Director, at bucksl@udmercy.edu. Please indicate whether your proposal is for a presentation only or if you would also like to publish an article with the Detroit Mercy Law Review on your presentation topic. If you are interested in submitting an article, it will be due to the Law Review on Friday, March 15, 2019. Please submit a current CV or resume along with your proposal. We will notify chosen speakers by November 30, 2018. Preference will be given to those willing to submit an article for publication.

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Recent Gender-Related Scholarship: Faith Jackson & Edieth Wu

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Feminist Law Profs Faith Jackson and Edieth Wu (Texas Southern University) have published two articles that address aspects of discrimination in legal education:

Must We Deploy Drones in the Twenty-first Century to Target Under the Radar Discrimination Against Minority Women at Law Schools at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUS)?, 31 Colum. J. Gender & L. 164 (2015); and

From Theory to Practice: Using the Gender-Sensitive Tracking and Monitoring System, 14 LSD Journal 91 (2017).

Worth a read, especially in light of the disturbing news out of St. John’s Law School and Cornell Law School that the climate for female students may be actively hostile.

As faculty members, we need to think hard and better about how we treat each other, what behavior we are modeling for our students, and how to make the legal profession (and legal academia) welcome to people of all genders).

 

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An Ode to the Marketplace, in a “Go Girl” Friendly Wrapper

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I am a tax lawyer.  I spend much of my academic time thinking about wealth and its opposites.  I read Forbes.  I read the Forbes 100 list. In short: I’m inclined to be curious about articles that cover the marketplace, broadly construed.

My cynical self couldn’t help a little chuckle in response to the Financial Advisor magazine’s gush over “The Nation’s Richest Self-Made Women” (here).  I love that the article focused on women; I love that the article focused on self-created (as opposed to inherited) wealth.  But something about the chirpy, upbeat tone of the article struck me as slightly…off.  I can’t quite identify what made me uneasy or unsatisfied. Maybe it’s just that much of the business press is too surface-level, and that was more obvious in this article.

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CFP: Special Edition of “Laws” Edited by Margaret

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Professor Margaret Thornton (Australia National University) will be guest-editing a special edition of the journal Laws, the international, peer-reviewed open-access journal published by MDPI (based on Basel, Switzerland). Here is the CFP:

The aim of this Special Issue is to highlight the continuing relevance of feminist legal theory (FLT). Contributors are invited to engage with the vexed issues of the time that disproportionately impact women. These include not only the turning away from equality and social justice as a result of the neoliberal embrace, but also the roll-back of pro-feminist initiatives by right-wing governments, such as those of the Trump Administration.  Contributors are at liberty to narrow their focus to a single issue or jurisdiction, as they wish. The only caveat is that the author makes a worthy contribution to the reappraisal of the place of FLT in contemporary scholarship.

In response to the Second Wave Feminism of the late 20th century, feminist legal scholars challenged conventional ways of thinking about law. They have exposed the claims to universality, objectivity, and neutrality of legal positivism as partial and masculinist. Their scholarly endeavors have led to feminist legal theory (FLT) being included in the curricula of many law schools and receiving the endorsement of the academic gatekeepers.

Nevertheless, the honeymoon period was short-lived, because of the ascendancy of neoliberalism. This led to the commodification of higher education, ever-increasing tuition fees, and pressure on universities to produce job-ready graduates to serve the new-knowledge economy. Students then began to say that they no longer wanted FLT on their testamurs, lest it harm their chances in the job market.

The demise of FLT was accompanied by a backlash against feminism and the popular asseveration that we now inhabit a post-feminism age. However, the “post” in post-feminism is ambiguous, as it can mean either that feminism is passé or that it signals a new beginning. The point is that issues such as violence against women, femicide, and sexual harassment have never gone away. Indeed, the world-wide “#MeToo” movement is a powerful reminder of the continuing relevance of feminism.

This Special Issue is intended to show that, far from being a spent force, FLT is a vital means of making sense of the rapidly changing world of the 21st century, which includes a distinctly anti-feminist as well as a pro-feminist dimension. This gives contributors considerable scope to write on a topic and perspective of their choice. Neoliberalism itself is a fertile field in light of its marked reaction against the central feminist values of collective action, equality, and social justice, in favor of individualism and promotion of the self. The impact of the rise of right-wing movements in many parts of the world, including the United States, also has profound ramifications for feminism. To take into account global diversity, specific country perspectives on prevailing sexual politics are encouraged.

The possibilities for innovative scholarly work are endless. The conjunction of neoliberalism and moral conservatism may therefore have given FLT an adrenalin shot in the arm. I very much look forward to receiving a submission from you.

Manuscript submission details are here.  The deadline for manuscript submissions is September 1, 2019.

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Female Law Professors’ Letter to Senators re Kavanaugh Nomination

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A group of female law professors have drafted a letter to the Senate expressing concern over the Kavanaugh appointment.  The letter has been covered by the (UK) Guardian here.  The full text of the letter is as follows:

Dear Senators:

We are a non-partisan group of women law faculty from across the nation charged with training our students to become ethical lawyers and leaders of the bar. We believe in and embrace the Supreme Court and all that it represents – judicial independence, fair-mindedness, and justice and equality under the law. On a daily basis, we teach our students about the importance of the rule of law, impartiality on the part of judges in the United States’ legal system, and professionalism as a mandate for attorneys and judges.

Judicial professionalism is not an abstract ideal. At a minimum, judicial professionalism includes respecting and listening to parties who come before the bench, exercising honesty and integrity, and the ability to control one’s temper. The ABA Model Code of Judicial Conduct and the Code of Conduct for United States Judges give guidance to judges on how to perform their duties with impartiality and integrity. These characteristics are the building blocks of a fair and just legal system. They were, however, absent from Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s opening statement and testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee on September 28, 2018. We are deeply concerned that if Judge Kavanaugh is confirmed, he will fail to perform his duties in a manner befitting our highest Court. For these reasons, we urge you to vote against Judge Kavanaugh’s nomination to the Supreme Court of the United States of America.

Canon 2 of the Code of Conduct for United States Judges requires that “[a] judge should respect and comply with the law and should act at all times in a manner that promotes public confidence in the integrity and impartiality of the judiciary.” Manifestations of bias or prejudice with respect to gender and political affiliation are inconsistent with Canon 2.

Judge Kavanaugh demonstrated disrespect towards Democratic senators vested with the constitutional authority to assess his ability to serve on the Supreme Court of the United States. He continually interrupted, speaking in a tone that was inappropriate given the seriousness of the proceedings. His condescension was especially evident in his responses to the questions of women senators. One of the worst instances of such behavior was exhibited when Senator Amy Klobuchar asked the Judge whether his drinking meant that he could not remember events. He responded, “You’re asking about blackout. I don’t know, have you?”

Judge Kavanaugh’s lack of respect for our democratic institutions, and for women in positions of power in particular, revealed that he does not have the requisite judicial temperament. We would never allow our students to engage in such conduct even in mock proceedings or the classroom. If the venue for Judge Kavanaugh’s conduct had been a courtroom, a judge might have found him in contempt.

Many of us have participated on search committees for faculty members, deans, provosts, university presidents, and other positions. If job candidates refused to answer probative questions and side-stepped with stock answers about their pedigrees and accomplishments, their behavior would leave us with serious questions about their honesty and credibility.

We are not alone in our assessment of Judge Kavanaugh. Although the Judge has cited the ABA’s endorsement of his nomination in 2006, the ABA actually downgraded the Judge from well-qualified to simply qualified, in part, because of his temperament and concerns about his “ability to be balanced and fair.”

We doubt that Judge Kavanaugh can be impartial. In his lengthy opening remarks during the Senate hearing, he stated:

This whole two-week effort has been a calculated and orchestrated political hit fueled with apparent pent-up anger about President Trump and the 2016 election, fear that has been unfairly stoked about my judicial record. Revenge on behalf of the Clintons and millions of dollars in money from outside left-wing opposition groups.

For over two centuries, Supreme Court justices have set aside their political views to evaluate claims and render rulings that advance the rule of law and reflect changes in our society.  Judge Kavanaugh’s pointed remarks suggest he does not have the capacity to give fair consideration to all cases.

We urge you to reject Judge Kavanaugh’s nomination to the Supreme Court of the United States of America. Judge Kavanaugh has shown that he is unable to respect women in positions of power, manifests bias with respect to gender and political affiliation, does not meet basic standards of professionalism, and lacks independence, impartiality, and judicial temperament.

Principal drafters of the letter, signing in an individual capacity, are Felice Batlan (Chicago-Kent College of Law), Kathleen Engel (Suffolk University Law School), Karla McKanders (Vanderbilt University Law School), Teri McMurtry-Chubb (Mercer University School of Law), Jennifer D. Oliva (West Virginia University) and Mae C. Quinn (University of Florida Levin College of Law).

Additional signatories are welcome until Friday. Please contact any of the drafters for more details on how to add your name.

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Ethics Complaint Filed Against Judge Kavanaugh

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Professor Vernellia Randall

Feminist Law Prof Vernellia Randall (Dayton) has filed in the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit an ethics complaint against Judge Kavanaugh on the grounds that his partisan statements and his behavior before Congress call into question Kavanaugh’s ability to be an impartial member of the Federal circuit court and Supreme Court . The complaint specifically refers to, among other things, this portion of the Code of Judicial Conduct, District of Columbia Courts (2018):

A judge shall act at all times in a manner that promotes public confidence in the independence, integrity, and impartiality of the judiciary, and shall avoid impropriety and the appearance of impropriety.

A full copy of the Professor Randall’s complaint is here.

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Law Professors’ Letter on Kavanaugh’s “Judicial Temperament”

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The Huffington Post features a short write-up of the letter signed by over 500 law professors expressing concern about Judge Kavanaugh’s lack of judicial temperament.  Here is an except of the HuffPo piece.

More than 500 law professors from nearly 100 law schools around the nation have signed a letter to the U.S. Senate to say that the volatile temperament Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh displayed on Thursday as he testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee disqualifies him from sitting on the nation’s highest court.

“We regret that we feel compelled to write to you to provide our views that at the Senate hearings on Thursday, September 27, 2018, the Honorable Brett Kavanaugh displayed a lack of judicial temperament that would be disqualifying for any court, and certainly for elevation to the highest court of this land,” the letter says.

The full piece is here. A copy of the letter is here.

The full law professors’ letter, with the list of signatories, is here.  Additional sign-ons are welcome until Thursday at noon Eastern.  If you’d like to sign the letter, directions for adding your name are here.

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The Senate Responds to Kavanaugh’s Accusers

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Dr. Christine Blasey Ford’s accusation that Judge Brett Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her when they were both in high school has turned Kavanaugh’s judicial confirmation into an extremely polarizing political issue.

In the midst of the #metoo movement, Dr. Ford’s accusation (and the two others that have followed) has brought the issue of prevalence of sexual assaults back into the limelight and political officials’ responses to the accusations have varied widely, leading to a new trending Twitter hashtag: #WhyIDidntReport.  A hearing is set for this Thursday – both Ford and Kavanaugh are scheduled to testify – and it remains uncertain what the vote will be.

Because the midterms are approaching, several Senators’ future political careers are at stake and the media has been pressuring them to make a statement on Kavanaugh’s nomination and his now-multiple accusations of sexual assault.  It is the Senate that will determine whether Kavanaugh is confirmed.  What follows is a summary of every Senator’s response to the sexual assault accusations against Kavanaugh, gathered through media interviews or social media postings.  They have been grouped into six categories: (1) believes Ford and calls to investigate, (2) unsure but calls to investigate, (3) Ford is mistaken, (4) Ford is lying, (5) doesn’t care if it’s true, and (6) no response.  In addition, the Senators who are up for re-election are noted with an asterisk.

Murkowski, Lisa – (R – AK): Doesn’t know and investigate.

Sullivan, Dan – (R – AK): Doesn’t know and investigate. 

Jones, Doug – (D – AL): Doesn’t know and investigate.  

Shelby, Richard C. – (R – AL): Doesn’t know and investigate. 

Boozman, John – (R – AR): No response. 

Cotton, Tom – (R – AR): Doesn’t care.

*Flake, Jeff – (R – AZ): Doesn’t know and investigate.

Kyl, Jon – (R – AZ): Doesn’t know and investigate.

*Feinstein, Dianne – (D – CA): Believe and investigate. 

Harris, Kamala D. – (D – CA): Believe and investigate. 

Bennet, Michael F. – (D – CO): Believe and investigate. 

Gardner, Cory – (R – CO): Doesn’t know and investigate 

Blumenthal, Richard – (D – CT): Believe and investigate. 

*Murphy, Christopher – (D – CT): Doesn’t know and investigate.  

*Carper, Thomas R. – (D – DE): Doesn’t know and investigate. 

Coons, Christopher A. – (D – DE): Believe and investigate.  

*Nelson, Bill – (D – FL): Doesn’t know and investigate. 

Rubio, Marco – (R – FL): Doesn’t care.

Isakson, Johnny – (R – GA): No response.

Perdue, David – (R – GA): Doesn’t know and investigate.

*Hirono, Mazie K. – (D – HI): Believe and investigate. 

Schatz, Brian – (D – HI): No response.

Ernst, Joni – (R – IA): She’s lying.

Grassley, Chuck – (R – IA): Doesn’t know and investigate.

Crapo, Mike – (R – ID): No response.

Risch, James E. – (R – ID): No response.

Duckworth, Tammy – (D – IL): Believe and investigate.

Durbin, Richard J. – (D – IL): Believe and investigate.

*Donnelly, Joe – (D – IN): Doesn’t know and investigate. 

Young, Todd – (R – IN): No response.

Moran, Jerry – (R – KS): Doesn’t know and investigate.  

Roberts, Pat – (R – KS): Doesn’t know and investigate. 

McConnell, Mitch – (R – KY): Doesn’t care. 

Paul, Rand – (R – KY): Doesn’t care. 

Cassidy, Bill – (R – LA): She’s lying.

Kennedy, John – (R – LA): Doesn’t know and investigate.

Markey, Edward J. – (D – MA): Believe and investigate.

*Warren, Elizabeth – (D – MA): Believe and investigate.

*Cardin, Benjamin L. – (D – MD): Believe and investigate.

Van Hollen, Chris – (D – MD): Believe and investigate.

Collins, Susan M. – (R – ME): Doesn’t know and investigate. 

*King, Angus S., Jr. – (I – ME): No response. 

Peters, Gary C. – (D – MI): Believe and investigate.

*Stabenow, Debbie – (D – MI): Believe and investigate.

*Klobuchar, Amy – (D – MN): Believe and investigate. 

Smith, Tina – (D – MN): Believe and investigate.

Blunt, Roy – (R – MO): Doesn’t know and investigate. 

*McCaskill, Claire – (D – MO): Doesn’t know and investigate.

Hyde-Smith, Cindy – (R – MS): She’s lying. 

*Wicker, Roger F. – (R – MS): She’s lying. 

Daines, Steve – (R – MT): She’s lying.

*Tester, Jon – (D – MT): No response.

Burr, Richard – (R – NC): No response. 

Tillis, Thom – (R – NC): Doesn’t know and investigate.

*Heitkamp, Heidi – (D – ND): Doesn’t know and investigate.

Hoeven, John – (R – ND): No response.

*Fischer, Deb – (R – NE):  No response.

Sasse, Ben – (R – NE):  No response.

Hassan, Margaret Wood – (D – NH): Believe and investigate.

Shaheen, Jeanne – (D – NH): Believe and investigate.

Booker, Cory A. – (D – NJ): Believe and investigate.

*Menendez, Robert – (D – NJ): Believe and investigate.

*Heinrich, Martin – (D – NM): Believe and investigate.

Udall, Tom – (D – NM): Believe and investigate. 

Cortez Masto, Catherine – (D – NV): Believe and investigate. 

*Heller, Dean – (R – NV): Doesn’t care.

*Gillibrand, Kirsten E. – (D – NY): Believe and investigate. 

Schumer, Charles E. – (D – NY): Believe and investigate. 

*Brown, Sherrod – (D – OH): No response.

Portman, Rob – (R – OH): She’s lying.

Inhofe, James M. – (R – OK): No response. 

Lankford, James – (R – OK): (Probably) doesn’t care.

Merkley, Jeff – (D – OR): Believe and investigate. 

Wyden, Ron – (D – OR): Believe and investigate. 

*Casey, Robert P., Jr. – (D – PA): Believe and investigate.

Toomey, Patrick J. – (R – PA): Don’t know and investigate. 

Reed, Jack – (D – RI): Believe and investigate. 

*Whitehouse, Sheldon – (D – RI): Believe and investigate. 

Graham, Lindsey – (R – SC): Doesn’t care.

Scott, Tim – (R – SC): No response. 

Rounds, Mike – (R – SD): No response. 

Thune, John – (R – SD): She’s lying/confused.

Alexander, Lamar – (R – TN): She’s lying/confused.

*Corker, Bob – (R – TN): She’s lying.

Cornyn, John – (R – TX): She’s lying.

*Cruz, Ted – (R – TX): Doesn’t know and investigate.

*Hatch, Orrin G. – (R – UT): She’s lying.

Lee, Mike – (R – UT): No response. 

*Kaine, Tim – (D – VA): Believe and investigate. 

Warner, Mark R. – (D – VA): Believe and investigate.

Leahy, Patrick J. – (D – VT): Believe and investigate.  

*Sanders, Bernard – (I – VT): Believe and investigate.

*Cantwell, Maria – (D – WA): Believe and investigate.

Murray, Patty – (D – WA): Believe and investigate.

*Baldwin, Tammy – (D – WI): Believe and investigate.

Johnson, Ron – (R – WI): Doesn’t know and investigate.

Capito, Shelley Moore – (R – WV): She’s lying.

*Manchin, Joe, III – (D – WV) Class I: Doesn’t know and investigate.

*Barrasso, John – (R – WY): Doesn’t know and investigate.

Enzi, Michael B. – (R – WY): Doesn’t know and investigate.

-JoAnn Sweeny and John Slack

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Law Professors’ Letter Regarding Methods Used to Evaluate Kavanaugh Allegations

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More than 250 law professors with expertise in gender violence sent a letter to the Senate Judiciary Committee, expressing our “profound concern” regarding the methods of evaluation of the allegations of Judge Kavanaugh’s sexual misconduct. The full text of the letter is copied below the fold. (Thank you to Julie Goldscheid who is the letter’s primary author.) It may be helpful to remind readers of the 2015 national survey of more than 900 advocates and service providers regarding police response to sexual assault & IPV available here.  The survey results demonstrate the many reasons women do not report sexual assault to police.

[A full copy of the letter is also available here. – Ed.]
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Women’s Court of Canada Act and Rules @IISJOnati

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Melinda Buckley is publishing Women’s Court of Canada Act and Rules in the Oñati Socio-Legal Series. Here is the abstract in English and Spanish.

English Abstract: This paper explores the issue of how a feminist court could operate through the device of a model statute and rules for the Women’s Court of Canada. The Women’s Court of Canada is a feminist legal project bringing together academics, activists, and litigators to ‘rewrite’ Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms equality jurisprudence. Over the course of more than a decade, the members of this virtual ‘court’ have reconsidered leading equality rights decisions, rendering alternative judgments with the aim of articulating fresh conceptions of substantive equality in judgment form. Here, the author takes a step away from the substance of equality rights law to focus on legal institutions and procedure.

Spanish Abstract: El presente artículo profundiza en la cuestión de cómo podría funcionar un tribunal feminista mediante unos estatutos tipo y unas normas para el Tribunal de Mujeres de Canadá. El Tribunal de Mujeres de Canadá es un proyecto jurídico feminista que reúne a académicas, activistas y abogadas, quienes ‘reescriben’ la jurisprudencia sobre igualdad de la Carta Canadiense de los Derechos y las Libertades. Durante más de una década, los miembros de este ‘tribunal’ virtual han cuestionado sentencias con el objetivo de articular concepciones nuevas de igualdad sustantiva en forma de sentencia. La autora de este artículo se distancia de lo sustantivo de las leyes sobre derecho a la igualdad y se centra en las instituciones jurídicas y el procedimiento.

Download the article from SSRN at the link.

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Murray on “Epistemic Injustice in Puerto Rico”

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Yxta Maya Murray (Loyola LA) has posted to SSRN her article “FEMA Has Been a Nightmare”: Epistemic Injustice in Puerto Rico, forthcoming in the Willamette Law Review.  Here is the abstract:

The continuing disaster in Puerto Rico, caused by the ravages of Hurricane Maria and federal inattention, cannot be understood without looking at the interrelated problems of power, bias, and epistemology.

Federal power and bias determined which dangers in Puerto Rico would be recognized by government officials, and which would be deemed too indeterminate to plan for and respond to: In the days following Maria’s assault on the island on September 20, 2017, officials such as FEMA’s Administrative head Brock Long, President Donald Trump, and several U.S. senators defended against accusations of an inept and paltry federal aid response by citing “logistics” and Puerto Rico’s location within a body of “big water,” indicating that the island’s topography and physical situation proved so epistemically inaccessible to them – so uncertain — that they could not organize an effective relief response. I call this the federal government’s “uncertainty defense.”

Furthermore, the government’s putative uncertainty about Puerto Rico’s physical features bled into its on-the-ground engagement with its residents: Interviews with residents and responders reveal that FEMA sent to Puerto Rico personnel that 1) did not speak Spanish, 2) used technology to communicate with victims even though poor Puerto Ricans did not have access to intelligent devices and the power grid had been down since September 20, 3) gave out food boxes containing items laden with sugar and salt to victims with heart disease and diabetes, 4) did not reach people in mountainous regions, and 5) could not foresee that the elderly would constitute an especially vulnerable population. This means that Puerto Ricans’ culture, health, and patterns of living were regarded as indeterminacies that the federal government found impossible to calculate and so cope with after the storm.

However, insofar as President Trump and Administrator Long seek to marshal an uncertainty defense to explain their failure to provide meaningful aid to Puerto Ricans, their effort fails. An eloquent legal literature that deals with problems of epistemology and disaster exists, and has been written by Dan Farber, Cass Sunstein, and Robert Verchick. These scholars all define when hazards are discernible, and when they veer so beyond human ken as to become “uncertainties” that become impossible to strategize around in the event of a catastrophe. Their work helps us understand that the factors that Trump and Long characterized as unplannable logistics were not uncertainties at all, but rather “known knowns” that could have been calculated and planned for long in advance of the hurricane.

The real reason that Puerto Rico’s topography and people proved unfathomable to federal officials had nothing to do with their enigmatic qualities, but grew out of a phenomenon called “epistemic injustice,” which has been limned by the philosopher Miranda Fricker.

Deadly epistemic uncertainty did exist in Puerto Rico, however. While uncertainty and risk theorists usually gauge uncertainty from the perspective of governmental decision makers, uncertainty can be detected among the victims themselves: I call this victim uncertainty, and argue that it was caused by the government’s acts of epistemic injustice. Puerto Rican victims of Hurricane Maria experienced uncertainty because they could not predict that the government would prove so psychologically blind to their island’s basic features, and to their status as human beings with a particular culture and set of demographics, that its agents would not be able to help them when the time came. This uncertainty bolstered what is known in psychological writings as “uncertainty paralysis:” Victims’ uncertainty paralysis hampered their abilities to make the crucial decisions of whether to wait for government relief or engage in self-help during the exigencies of the storm.

Like the disaster of Hurricane Katrina and the lack of care that led to so many deaths in New Orleans in 2005, the repercussions of Puerto Rico 2017 will be felt for a long time. In this article, I argue that the government must attend to the problems of power and epistemology revealed by Hurricane Maria: It should do so by listening to the stories of subordinated populations, such as those in Puerto Rico, in order to understand whom they will be helping in foreseeable future disasters, and how to do so.

In this article, I set forth interviews with residents and responders in order to highlight the failures of the U.S. response in the fall of 2017. These interviews illustrate the deadly ways in which the government perpetuated epistemic injustice in the days before and after the storm, and how the victims themselves consequently experienced dangerous epistemic uncertainty. I also set forth recommendations for the critical narrative gathering necessary for transforming government “uncertainties” about subordinated populations into recognized facts: These may take place under the auspices of the Stafford Act, which authorizes the President to send federal agencies (including FEMA) to disaster zones, as well as FEMA policy.

The full article is available here.

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Irina Manta on “Tinder Lies”

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Irina Manta (Hofstra) has posted to SSRN her article Tinder Lies, forthcoming in the Wake Forest Law Review (2019).  Here is the abstract:

The rise of Internet dating — in recent years especially through the use of mobile-based apps such as Tinder, Bumble, or Hinge — forces us to re-examine an old problem in the law: that of how to handle sexual fraud. Many people with romantic aspirations today meet individuals with whom they do not share friends or acquaintances, which allows predators to spin tales as to their true identities and engage in sexual relations through the use of deceit. Indeed, according to some studies, about 80% of individuals lie on at least some part of their online dating profiles, and a subset of those individuals tell lies that undermine the foundation of their sexual mates’ subsequent ability to give consent. Whether or how to criminalize this type of fraudulent behavior has been debated for some time, and the difficulties involved in prosecutions in this context have made the criminal law a fairly ineffective tool. Previous proposals for tort recovery have failed to gain many adherents for similar reasons. This Article seeks to strike a new path by proposing, first, that we harness the tools of trademark law to reduce search costs and deception in the dating marketplace just like we do in the economic marketplace. Second, it argues that we should use a streamlined process through small claims courts to discourage behaviors that may bring significant dignitary, emotional, and other harms to people’s lives. Last, it proposes the use of statutory damages to alleviate the difficulties in accurately gauging the remedy level for the harm from a given instance of sexual fraud. By providing recovery in cases of material lies like trademark law does in cases involving deceptive marks, this Article takes an important step toward aligning the legal framework of sexual fraud with those of other types of misrepresentation, incentivizing transparency in the increasingly murky dating world, and protecting individuals’ ability meaningfully to consent to sexual relations.

The full article is available here.

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Welcome to the Blogroll, 3 Additional Feminist Law Profs!

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Welcome to these colleagues, newly added today!

Our blog roll ranks are increasing.  If you’re a full-time law prof and wish to be listed as a self-identified feminist law professor, whatever that means to you, please reach out to me at bcrawford at law dot pace dot edu.

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