Sunday, June 3, 2007
Brian Leiter has announced his annual study to figure out which are the most productive law faculties in the U.S., in terms of scholarship. He is very clear that his rankings will exclude legal writing professors:
"The faculty lists include only academic faculty (an effort has been made to exclude clinical, adjunct, and legal writing faculty, since these studies will focus on scholarly output)."
I'm not entirely sure what the term "academic faculty" means, except of course that it does not mean clinicians, adjunct professors, or legal writing professors. I am sure, however, that most full-time clinic professors and legal writing professors consider themselves "academics."
The suggestion that legal writing professors do not produce scholarship shows how mired in the past Leiter is. There has been a veritable explosion of scholarship produced by legal writing professors in the last two decades.
Some places to find the scholarship of legal writing professors include:
- the Appendix to the second edition of the ABA's Sourcebook on Legal Writing Programs, which became so large the only practical way for the ABA to publish it was on-line;
- Terrill Pollman & Linda H. Edwards, Scholarship by Legal Writing Professors: New Voice in the Legal Academy, 11 Legal Writing: The Journal of the Legal Writing Institute 3, 59-212 (2005) (listing the scholarship of many legal writing professors, covering both legal writing and a wide range of other legal fields);
- Terrill Pollman & Linda H. Edwards, Scholarship Project: Publications by Teachers of Legal Writing & Rhetoric;
- Donald J. Dunn, Legal Research and Writing Resources: Recent Publications, a regular column in Perpectives: Teaching Legal Research & Writing, a West publication.
This explosion in legal writing professors' scholarship is all the more remarkable given the lack of support for and extra challenges to writing that many legal writing professors encounter. For more information on the situation, see my article on The Quest for Scholarship: The Legal Writing Professor's Paradox, 80 Oregon Law Review 1007 (2002).