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Spring 2022

An audience member speaks into a microphone.

Credit: Lorin Granger Harvard Law School Library Book Talk: Lawrence Lessig, Fidelity & Constraint: How the Supreme Court Has Read the American Constitution

Faculty Book Talks take place via Zoom and are open to the Harvard Community, unless noted otherwise.  Advance Registration is required through the links listed below.

The Hughes Court From Progressivism to Pluralism, 1930 to 1941

Tuesday, April 5, 12:30pm-1:30pm Eastern time via Zoom Webinars
Written By Mark Tushnet, Cambridge University Press, published January 2022

Join us for a discussion on The Hughes Court From Progressivism to Pluralism, 1930 to 1941 with author Mark Tushnet and panelists Nikolas Bowie, Richard Fallon, Kenneth Mack, and Adrian Vermeule. This event is free and will be recorded. Registration is required. If you, or an event participant, require disability-related accommodations, please contact Accessibility Services at accessibility@law.harvard.edu. Register at https://bit.ly/TushnetMarch2022.

More about the book from Cambridge University Press: The Hughes Court: From Progressivism to Pluralism, 1930 to 1941 describes the closing of one era in constitutional jurisprudence and the opening of another. This comprehensive study of the Supreme Court from 1930 to 1941 – when Charles Evans Hughes was Chief Justice – shows how nearly all justices, even the most conservative, accepted the broad premises of a Progressive theory of government and the Constitution. The Progressive view gradually increased its hold throughout the decade, but at its end, interest group pluralism began to influence the law. By 1941, constitutional and public law was discernibly different from what it had been in 1930, but there was no sharp or instantaneous Constitutional Revolution in 1937 despite claims to the contrary. This study supports its conclusions by examining the Court’s work in constitutional law, administrative law, the law of justiciability, civil rights and civil liberties, and statutory interpretation.

Mark Tushnet is an Emeritus Professor at Harvard Law School. He graduated from Harvard College and Yale Law School and served as a law clerk to Justice Thurgood Marshall.  He specializes in constitutional law and theory, including comparative constitutional law. His research includes studies of constitutional review in the United States and around the world, and the creation of other “institutions for protecting constitutional democracy.” He also writes in the area of legal and particularly constitutional history, with works on the development of civil rights law in the United States and a history of the Supreme Court in the 1930s.

Nikolas Bowie is an Assistant Professor of Law at Harvard Law School. He is a historian who teaches courses in federal constitutional law, state constitutional law, and local government law. Professor Bowie’s research focuses on critical legal histories of democracy in the United States. He has written about the exclusion of workers from corporate governance, the exclusion of immigrants from constitutional governance, and the relationship between self-government, written constitutions, and judicial review. Professor Bowie received a BA in history from Yale and a JD and PhD in history from Harvard. He clerked for Judge Jeffrey Sutton of the US Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit and Justice Sonia Sotomayor of the US Supreme Court.

Richard H. Fallon, Jr. is the Story Professor of Law and an Affiliate Professor in the Government Department. Fallon is a graduate of Yale University (History, 1975) and Yale Law School (1980). He also earned a B.A. degree in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics from Oxford University (1977), which he attended as a Rhodes Scholar. Before entering teaching, Fallon served as a law clerk to Judge J. Skelly Wright and to Justice Lewis F. Powell of the United States Supreme Court. Fallon has written extensively about Constitutional Law and Federal Courts Law. He is the author of The Nature of Constitutional Rights (Cambridge University Press, 2019), Law and Legitimacy in the Supreme Court (Harvard University Press 2018), The Dynamic Constitution (Cambridge University Press, 2d ed. 2013) and Implementing the Constitution (Harvard University Press, 2001) and a co-editor of Constitutional Law: Cases-Comments-Questions (13th edition 2020) and Hart & Wechsler’s The Federal Courts and the Federal System (7th ed. 2015). Fallon is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and a member of the American Law Institute.

Kenneth W. Mack is the inaugural Lawrence D. Biele Professor of Law, Affiliate Professor of History at Harvard University, and the co-faculty leader of the Harvard Law School Program on Law and History. A member of the American Law Institute, his work has been published in the Harvard Law Review, Yale Law Journal, Journal of American History, and other scholarly journals. In 2016, President Obama appointed him to the Permanent Committee for the Oliver Wendell Holmes Devise. Before joining HLS, he clerked for the Honorable Robert L. Carter, in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, and practiced law in the Washington, D.C. office of the firm Covington & Burling.

Adrian Vermeule is the Ralph S. Tyler, Jr. Professor of Constitutional Law. Before coming to the Law School, he was the Bernard D. Meltzer Professor of Law at the University of Chicago. The author or co-author of nine books, most recently Law’s Abnegation: From Law’s Empire to the Administrative State (2016), The Constitution of Risk (2014) and The System of the Constitution (2012). He was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2012. His research focuses on administrative law, the administrative state, the design of institutions, and constitutional theory. Having grown up in Cambridge and attended Harvard College ’90 and Harvard Law School ’93, Vermeule lives in Cambridge still.


Mental Health, Legal Capacity, and Human Rights

Tuesday March 29, 12:30pm-1:30pm Eastern time via Zoom Webinars
Edited by Michael Ashley Stein, Faraaz Mahomed, Vikram Patel & Charlene Sunkel, Cambridge University Press, published August 2021

Join us on Tuesday March 29 at 12:30pm on Zoom for a HLS Library Book Talk! This event features a discussion on Mental Health, Legal Capacity, and Human Rights with co-editors Michael Ashley Stein and Vikram Patel and panelists. This event is free and will be recorded. Registration is required. If you, or an event participant, require disability-related accommodations, please contact Accessibility Services at accessibility@law.harvard.edu. Register at https://bit.ly/SteinMarch2022.

More about the book from Cambridge University Press: “Since adoption of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and the interpretive General Comment 1, the topic of legal capacity in mental health settings has generated considerable debate in disciplines ranging from law and psychiatry to public health and public policy. With over 180 countries having ratified the Convention, the shifts required in law and clinical practice need to be informed by interdisciplinary and contextually relevant research as well as the views of stakeholders. With an equal emphasis on the Global North and Global South, this volume offers a comprehensive, interdisciplinary analysis of legal capacity in the realm of mental health. Integrating rigorous academic research with perspectives from people with psychosocial disabilities and their caregivers, the authors provide a holistic overview of pertinent issues and suggest avenues for reform.”

Michael Ashley Stein is the co-founder and Executive Director of the Harvard Law School Project on Disability, and a Visiting Professor at Harvard Law School since 2005. Considered one of the world’s leading experts on disability law and policy, Dr. Stein participated in the drafting of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities; works with disabled peoples’ organizations and non-governmental organizations around the world; actively consults with governments on their disability laws and policies; advises an array of UN bodies and national human rights institutions; and has brought landmark disability rights litigation globally. 

Vikram Patel is The Pershing Square Professor of Global Health in the Blavatnik Institute’s Department of Global Health and Social Medicine at Harvard Medical School. He co-leads the Department’s Mental Health for All lab and co-leads the GlobalMentalHealth@Harvard initiative. His work has focused on the burden of mental health problems across the life course, their association with social disadvantage, and the use of community resources for their prevention and treatment. He is a Fellow of the UK’s Academy of Medical Sciences and has served on the Committee which drafted India’s first National Mental Health Policy and the WHO High Level Independent Commission for NCDs.

Alberto Vásquez is a Senior Advisor at the Center for Inclusive Policy (CIP). He is a Peruvian lawyer and disability rights advocate. He holds a law degree from the Pontifical Catholic University of Peru and an LL.M in International and Comparative Disability Law and Policy from the National University of Ireland, Galway. He has also worked as a consultant for different United Nations agencies, including UNICEF, the World Health Organization, the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) and the Office of the Secretary General. He is the President of Sociedad y Discapacidad – SODIS, and board member of the Latin American Network of Psychosocial Diversity and the Disability Rights Fund (DRF).

Gerald L. Neuman is the J. Sinclair Armstrong Professor of International, Foreign, and Comparative Law, and the Director of the Human Rights Program at HLS. He teaches human rights, constitutional law, and immigration and nationality law. His current research focuses on international human rights bodies, transnational dimensions of constitutionalism, and rights of foreign nationals. He is the author of Strangers to the Constitution: Immigrants, Borders and Fundamental Law (Princeton 1996), and co-author of the casebook Human Rights (with Louis Henkin et al., Foundation Press). From 2011 to 2014, he was a member of the Human Rights Committee, the treaty body that monitors compliance with the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.

Lydia X. Z. Brown is an advocate, organizer, educator, attorney, strategist, and writer. Their work focuses on addressing state and interpersonal violence targeting disabled people living at the intersections of race, class, gender, sexuality, faith, language, and nation. They are Policy Counsel for Disability Rights and Algorithmic Fairness for the Privacy and Data Project at the Center for Democracy and Technology, and Director of Policy, Advocacy, and External Affairs for the Autistic Women and Nonbinary Network. Lydia currently serves as a member of the American Bar Association’s Commission on Disability Rights, chairperson of the ABA Civil Rights and Social Justice Section’s Disability Rights Committee, and representative of the Disability Justice Committee to the National Lawyers Guild’s National Executive Committee.

Alicia Ely Yamin is an Adjunct Lecturer on Global Health and Population at the Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health, and affiliated faculty member of the Department of Global Health and Social Medicine at Harvard Medical School. She leads the Global Health and Rights Project, which is a collaboration of the Petrie-Flom Center for Health Law Policy, Biotechnology and Bioethics (PFC) at Harvard Law School and the Global Health Education and Learning Incubator (GHELI) at Harvard University. A significant portion of her current research and policy work at GHRP focuses on legal and ethical issues in relation to priority setting for Universal Health Coverage, and Yamin is also a Senior Adviser to the Bergen Center on Ethics and Priority Setting (BCEPS) in Norway.


Vice Patrol: Cops, Courts, and the Struggle over Urban Gay Life before Stonewall

Tuesday March 8, 12:30pm-1:30pm, Milstein West AB, Wasserstein Hall
Anna Lvovsky, University of Chicago Press, published May 2021

Join us for a discussion on Vice Patrol: Cops, Courts, and the Struggle over Urban Gay Life before Stonewall with author Anna Lvovsky and panelists Janet Halley, Jill Lepore, and Ari Waldman. This event is free and will be recorded, and is open to all Harvard ID holders. A grab-and-go lunch will be served following the event. If you, or an event participant, require disability-related accommodations, please contact Accessibility Services at accessibility@law.harvard.edu.

More about the book from The University of Chicago Press: “In Vice Patrol, Anna Lvovsky…[traces] the tactics used to criminalize, profile, and suppress gay life from the 1930s through the 1960s, and the surprising controversies those tactics often inspired in court. Lvovsky shows that the vice squads’ campaigns stood at the center of live debates about not only the law’s treatment of queer people, but also the limits of ethical policing, the authority of experts, and the nature of sexual difference itself—debates that had often unexpected effects on the gay community’s rights and freedoms. Examining those battles, Vice Patrol enriches understandings of the regulation of queer life in the twentieth century and disputes about police power that continue today.”

Anna Lvovsky is an Assistant Professor of Law at Harvard Law School, where she teaches American legal history, the history of policing, criminal law, and evidence. Professor Lvovsky’s scholarship focuses on the legal and cultural dimensions of policing, judicial uses of professional knowledge, and the regulation of gender, sexuality, and morality. Prior to joining HLS, Professor Lvovsky was an Academic Fellow at Columbia Law School. She clerked for Judge Michael Boudin of the 1st U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals and for Judge Gerard E. Lynch of the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. Professor Lvovsky graduated magna cum laude from Harvard Law School, where she was articles co-chair of the Harvard Law Review and the recipient of the LGBTQ Writing Prize. She received her Ph.D. in the History of American Civilization from Harvard University, and earned a B.A. summa cum laude from Yale College.

Janet Halley is the Royall Professor of Law at Harvard Law School. She has written about Title IX enforcement, the slavery legacy behind her Chair, rape in the international law governing armed conflict, the theory and history of family law, social movements and the law, and the law of human trafficking. Her publications include: Split Decisions: How and Why to Take a Break from Feminism (Princeton 2006) and (with Hila Shamir, Rachel Rebouché, and Prabha Kotiswaran) Governance Feminism: An Introduction (Minnesota 2018) and Governance Feminism: Notes from the Field (Minnesota 2019). Professor Halley has consulted on Title IX enforcement and related criminal matters. She has a Ph.D. in English Literature from UCLA and a J.D. from Yale Law School.

Jill Lepore is the David Woods Kemper ’41 Professor of American History at Harvard University. She is also a staff writer at The New Yorker, where her essays include histories of the Constitution, the Supreme Court, debt, voting, torture, reproductive rights, the right to privacy, the gun debate, and the right to die. Much of her scholarship explores absences and asymmetries of evidence in the historical record. She joined the Harvard History Department in 2003 and was Chair of the History and Literature Program in 2005-10, 2012, and 2014. In 2012, she was named Harvard College Professor, in recognition of distinction in undergraduate teaching. In 2014, she was elected to the American Philosophical Society and to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Professor Lepore received a B.A. in English from Tufts University, an M.A. in American Culture from the University of Michigan, and a Ph.D. in American Studies from Yale University.

Ari E. Waldman is a Professor of Law and Computer Science and the Faculty Director for the Center for Law, Information and Creativity (CLIC) at Northeastern University School of Law. He was elected to the American Law Institute in 2019. In 2020, he was elected chair of the Privacy Law Scholars Conference (PLSC), the largest academic conference in the field of law and technology. He is also the founder of @Legally_Queer, which seeks to engage both the LGBTQ community and the general public in the role of the courts in equality and social justice. Professor Waldman holds an A.B. from Harvard College, a J.D. from Harvard Law School, and a M.A. and Ph.D. from Columbia University.


Lakefront: Public Trust and Private Rights in Chicago

Tuesday February 15, 12:30pm-1:30pm Eastern time via Zoom Webinars
Joseph Kearney and Thomas Merrill, Cornell University Press, published May 2021

Join us for a discussion on Lakefront: Public Trust and Private Rights in Chicago with authors Joseph Kearney and Thomas Merrill and panelists Henry Smith, Richard Lazarus, and Carol Rose. This event is free and will be recorded. Registration is required. If you, or an event participant, require disability-related accommodations, please contact Accessibility Services at accessibility@law.harvard.edu. Register at https://bit.ly/KearneyFeb2022.

More about the book from Cornell University Press: 
How did Chicago, a city known for commerce, come to have such a splendid public waterfront — its most treasured asset? The book’s authors study the lakefront’s evolution from the middle of the nineteenth century to the twenty-first. Their findings have significance for understanding not only Chicago’s history but also the law’s part in determining the future of significant urban resources such as waterfronts. The Chicago lakefront is where the American public trust doctrine, holding certain public resources off-limits to private development, was born. The book describes the circumstances that gave rise to the doctrine and its fluctuating importance over time, and reveals how it was resurrected in the later twentieth century to become the primary principle for mediating clashes between public and private lakefront rights. The book compares the effectiveness of the public trust idea to other property doctrines, and assesses the role of the law as compared to more institutional developments, such as the emergence of sanitary commissions and park districts, in securing the protection of the lakefront for public uses.

Joseph D. Kearney is the Dean and a Professor of Law at Marquette University Law School. Appointed in 2003, Joseph Kearney is one of the longest-serving law school deans in the country and is only the ninth person to hold the position at Marquette University since 1908. Dean Kearney has been a member of the Marquette faculty since 1997. Before coming to Marquette Law School, Dean Kearney practiced for six years at Sidley & Austin in Chicago. He also served as a law clerk to the Honorable Antonin Scalia, Justice of the United States Supreme Court, and to the Honorable Diarmuid F. O’Scannlain of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. Dean Kearney is an honors graduate of Yale College and Harvard Law School.

Thomas W. Merrill is the Charles Evans Hughes Professor of Law at Columbia Law School, where he teaches and writes about administrative, constitutional, and property law, among other topics. After clerking for Chief Judge David L. Bazelon on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit and for Justice Harry A. Blackmun on the U.S. Supreme Court, Merrill was a deputy solicitor general of the U.S. Department of Justice and an associate at the firm of Sidley & Austin LLP, where he also served as counsel for more than 20 years. In addition to Columbia, Merrill has served on the faculties of Northwestern Law School and Yale Law School. He is a member of the American Law Institute and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Henry E. Smith is the Fessenden Professor of Law at Harvard Law School, where he directs the Project on the Foundations of Private Law. Previously, he taught at the Northwestern University School of Law and was the Fred A. Johnston Professor of Property and Environmental Law at Yale Law School. He holds an A.B. from Harvard, a Ph.D. in Linguistics from Stanford, and a J.D. from Yale. After law school he clerked for the Hon. Ralph K. Winter, United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. Smith has written primarily on the law and economics of property and intellectual property, with a focus on how property-related institutions lower information costs and constrain strategic behavior. He teaches primarily in the areas of property, intellectual property, natural resources, remedies, and law and economics.

Richard J. Lazarus is the Howard and Katherine Aibel Professor of Law at Harvard University, where he teaches environmental law, natural resources Law, Supreme Court advocacy, and torts. Professor Lazarus has represented the United States, state and local governments, and environmental groups in the United States Supreme Court in 40 cases and has presented oral argument in 14 of those cases. His primary areas of legal scholarship are environmental and natural resources law, with particular emphasis on constitutional law and the Supreme Court. Prior to joining the Harvard Law faculty, Professor Lazarus was the Justice William J. Brennan, Jr., Professor of Law at Georgetown University. He graduated from Harvard Law School in 1979 and has a B.S. in chemistry and a B.A. in economics from the University of Illinois.

Carol M. Rose is the Gordon Bradford Tweedy Professor Emeritus of Law and Organization at Yale Law School. She joined the Law School faculty in 1989. Professor Rose teaches property, land use, environmental law, natural resources law, and intellectual property law. Her publications include Saving the Neighborhood: Racially Restrictive Covenants, Law, and Social Norms (2013), with Richard R.W. Brooks; Perspectives on Property Law (3rd edition), with Robert Ellickson and Bruce Ackerman (2000); and Property and Persuasion: Essays on the History, Theory and Rhetoric of Ownership (1994). She is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Professor Rose received her B.A. from Antioch in 1962, her M.A. from the University of Chicago in 1963, her Ph.D. in History from Cornell in 1969, and her J.D. from the University of Chicago in 1977. 


Civil Rights Queen: Constance Baker Motley and the Struggle for Equality

Tuesday February 8, 12:30pm-1:30pm Eastern time via Zoom Webinars
Tomiko Brown-Nagin, Pantheon Books, published January 2022

Join us for a discussion on Civil Rights Queen with HLS Professor and Dean of the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study Tomiko Brown-Nagin and panelists HLS Professor Kenneth Mack, Georgetown Law Professor Sheryll Cashin, and Harvard University Professor Evelyn Brooks Higginbotham. This event is free and will be recorded. Register via Zoom Webinars.

More about the book from Pantheon:
“Born to an aspirational working-class family during the Great Depression, Constance Baker Motley was expected to make a career as a hairdresser. Instead, she earned a law degree and used it to transform American society. The only woman member of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund’s legal team for many years, Motley helped litigate Brown v. Board of Education, defended Martin Luther King in Birmingham, and played a critical role in vanquishing Jim Crow laws in throughout the South…Motley was first woman elected borough president of Manhattan and the first black woman elected to the New York Senate. In a third act that capped off her career, the famed civil rights lawyer became the first black woman appointed to the federal judiciary. Burnished with an extraordinary wealth of research and an incisive examination of gender, race, and class, Civil Rights Queen tells the inspiring story of a remarkable American life and of a tumultuous period of social change.  Through this lens of Motley’s life, Tomiko Brown-Nagin asks us to ponder some of our most timeless and urgent questions: How do historically marginalized people access the corridors of power? How does access to power shape individuals committed to social justice? And, what is the price of the ticket?”

If you, or an event participant, require disability-related accommodations, please contact Accessibility Services at accessibility@law.harvard.edu.

Tomiko Brown-Nagin is Dean of the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University, the Daniel P.S. Paul Professor of Constitutional Law at Harvard Law School, and a professor of history at Harvard University. In 2019, she was appointed chair of the Presidential Committee on Harvard and the Legacy of Slavery. She is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Philosophical Society, and the American Law Institute, and was a distinguished lecturer for the Organization of American Historians. Her previous book, Courage to Dissent won the Bancroft Prize in 2011.

Kenneth Mack is the inaugural Lawrence D. Biele Professor of Law, Affiliate Professor of History at Harvard University, and the co-faculty leader of the Harvard Law School Program on Law and History. A member of the American Law Institute, his work has been published in the Harvard Law ReviewYale Law JournalJournal of American History, and other scholarly journals. In 2016, President Obama appointed him to the Permanent Committee for the Oliver Wendell Holmes Devise. Before joining HLS, he clerked for the Honorable Robert L. Carter, in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, and practiced law in the Washington, D.C. office of the firm Covington & Burling.

Sheryll Cashin is the Carmack Waterhouse Professor of Law, Civil Rights and Social Justice at Georgetown University. She has published widely in academic journals and written commentaries for Politico Magazine, the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Washington Post, Salon, The Root, and other media. Professor Cashin was law clerk to U.S. Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall and Judge Abner Mikva of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. As a Marshall Scholar, she received a master’s in English Law with honors from Oxford University and a J.D. with honors from Harvard Law School, where she was a member of the Harvard Law Review.

Evelyn Brooks Higginbotham is the Victor S. Thomas Professor of History and of African and African American Studies at Harvard University. She has been a tenured faculty member at Harvard since 1993, and she chaired the Department of African and African Americans Studies from 2006-2013. A pioneering scholar in African American women’s history, she is the author of the prizewinning book Righteous Discontent: The Women’s Movement in the Black Baptist Church 1880-1920. Higginbotham earned her Ph.D. from the University of Rochester in American History, her M.A. from Howard University, and her B.A. from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.