David Strauss

Visiting Professor of Law

Fall 2017

Areeda 230

Assistant: Margaret Flynn / 617-496-2074

Biography

David Strauss is the Gerald Ratner Distinguished Service Professor of Law at the University of Chicago and the Faculty Director of the University of Chicago Supreme Court and Appellate Clinic. He was a visiting professor at Harvard Law School in 2011. He has a B.A. summa cum laude from Harvard College, a B.Phil. from Oxford, where he was a Marshall Scholar, and a J.D. magna cum laude from Harvard. He has published many scholarly articles, principally on subjects in constitutional law, and is the author of The Living Constitution (Oxford University Press, 2010). He is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and a co-editor of the Supreme Court Review, and he is currently a member of the national Board of Directors of the American Constitution Society. He has taught constitutional law, federal courts, administrative law, civil procedure, and torts. He has received the University of Chicago Law School’s graduating students’ award for teaching excellence five times. He has argued eighteen cases before the U.S. Supreme Court, and he has served as an Assistant to the Solicitor General of the United States, as an Attorney-Adviser in the Office of Legal Counsel, and as Special Counsel to the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Areas of Interest

David A. Strauss, Fisher v. University of Texas and the Conservative Case for Affirmative Action, 2016 Sup. Ct. Rev. 1.
Categories:
Constitutional Law
,
Discrimination & Civil Rights
,
Family Law
Sub-Categories:
Fourteenth Amendment
,
Race & Ethnicity
,
Education Law
Type: Article
David A. Strauss, The Plain Language Court, 38 Cardozo L. Rev. 651 (2016).
Categories:
Government & Politics
Sub-Categories:
Statutory Interpretation
,
Supreme Court of the United States
,
Judges & Jurisprudence
,
Courts
Type: Article
David A. Strauss, The Supreme Court, 2014 Term — Foreword: Does the Constitution Mean What it Says?, 129 Harv. L. Rev. 1 (2015).
Categories:
Government & Politics
,
Constitutional Law
Sub-Categories:
Supreme Court of the United States
,
Judges & Jurisprudence
Type: Article
Abstract
The conventional view is that constitutional law begins with the text of the Constitution and proceeds from there. But that misdescribes U.S. constitutional law. Controversies in constitutional law are, almost always, about the meaning and effect of precedents, not about the text. Many important principles of constitutional law are inconsistent with the most natural reading of the text. The precedents govern the text, rather than the other way around; the text becomes important only when there are few precedents. Constitutional law, in a word, is not a text-based system, but a mixed system in which provisions of the text are treated roughly like precedents: they are expanded, limited, qualified, reconceived, or all-but-ignored, depending on how the law develops, and on judgments about how the law should develop.

Current Courses

Course Catalog View

Areeda 230

Assistant: Margaret Flynn / 617-496-2074