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Fall 2021 Course

Gender Identity, Sexual Orientation, and the Law

Prerequisites: None

Exam Type: Any Day Take-home

This course explores the ways in which the law intersects with gender identity and sexual orientation, examining this complex and evolving area of law in the context of a changing judicial and political landscape. Taught by a leading practitioner in the field, this course emphasizes the legal tools and decision-making processes involved in doing pathbreaking civil rights work. Students will gain an insight into the strategic and ethical tradeoffs involved in using the legal and political system to enact societal change.

Topics covered include: overview of gender identity, sexual orientation, and the historical development of LGBTQ+ rights; constitutional and statutory protections based on gender identity and sexual orientation; access to sex-segregated spaces and activities; religion-, speech-, and ethics-based objections; access to health care and reproductive technologies; non-binary and intersex identities; race and intersectional experience; and unique considerations in military, family, and prison litigation.

Class materials include: case law, case documents, legislative materials, regulatory materials, press accounts, legal scholarship, and sources from other academic disciplines.

Note: Some seats in this course are reserved for students who enroll in the LGBTQ+ Advocacy Clinic. The Office of Clinical and Pro Bono Programs handles registration in this course for students enrolled in the clinic. The drop deadline for clinical students is this course is August 13, 2021 (fall clinic students) or August 27, 2021 (spring clinic students).