Sunday, May 31, 2020
Call for Participants and Papers -AALS 2021 – Section on Socioeconomics and Law & Inequality Journal Summer Zoom conference
This is a call for papers and participants for two related events on the same theme:
Reforming Corporate Governance: Competition, Race, & Gender
- AALS Annual Meeting, Section on Socioeconomics
The Socioeconomics Section will focus its AALS program on reforming corporate governance. This call for papers focuses on the first of two panels, and addresses the role of internal corporate competition in exacerbating economic, gender and racial inequality. Critiques of shareholder primacy emphasize the way it contributes to a focus of short-term results at the expense of long-term institutional sustainability and the enrichment of top executives and hedge fund activists at the expense of other stakeholders Less examined is the relationship between the change in corporate governance and competitive evaluation systems, such as Jack Welch’s “rank and yank,” which pit employees against each other. In 2013, Welch emphasized that such systems allow CEOs to incentivize whatever behavior they choose while analyses of the financial crisis concluded that they also allowed upper management to maintain plausible deniability for the results. This panel builds on these critiques by considering the consequences for economic, racial, and gender inequality.
The call for participants and papers invites commentary on questions such as: How have contemporary systems of corporate governance and the related increased in zero-sum evaluation systems contributed to, greater economic, racial, and gender inequality? What is the role of diversity in promoting reform of corporate governance? How can feminist jurisprudence, critical race theory, and political economy contribute to these crucial topics of corporate law and governance? How can law and policy mitigate the existing racial, ethnic, gender, regional, and other inequities likely to be exacerbated in both the near and long terms through existing corporate structures?
- Summer 2020 Zoom Roundtable
Drawing on the same themes, Law & Inequality: A Journal of Theory and Practice and the Institute for New Economic Thinking are sponsoring a Zoom Roundtable this summer to discuss these ideas further. The Roundtable is designed for anyone interested in presenting a paper on, or discussing ideas related to, corporate governance, gender, race, and competition. The Roundtable will take place on July 24, 2020 at 12 p.m. EST
If you are interested in participating in either of these events, please send a 400-600 word description of what you'd like to discuss and whether the submission should be considered for either or both events. For the Zoom Roundtable, we are also looking for participants interested in commenting on others’ papers.
Submissions should be sent to [email protected], by June 15, 2020, for consideration by the organizers of the panel: June Carbone (Minnesota)(chair), Afra Afsharipour (UC Davis), Naomi Cahn (GW), Nancy Levit (UMKC), and Darren Rosenblum (Pace). The author[s] of the selected paper(s) will be notified by June 22, 2020. Please also let us know if you are interested in publishing with Law & Inequality.
The Call for Papers presenters will be responsible for paying their registration fee and hotel and travel expenses if they participate in the AALS Annual Meeting. (The Roundtable is free.)
Friday, May 29, 2020
From the Atlantic:
Since the early days of the pandemic, I’ve been living with my in-laws in rural Connecticut. More recently, my husband’s sister and her nine-month-old son joined us. I’ve always tried to avoid the kind of multigenerational household I grew up in, but I’m finding the arrangement surprisingly satisfying.
In China, where I’m from, three or four generations commonly live together under one roof. At one point when I was a child, both my great-grandmother and grandmother resided with us. To say that I was over-parented is an understatement. To me, living with extended family just meant having more people in my business, complicating my decisions with their input and agenda. I ended up idealizing dwelling alone, needing and answering to no one.
Eventually, I came around to the idea of cohabiting with one other person, a trusted partner and confidant. But after getting married four years ago, I nervously put off having a baby. I couldn’t picture a scenario that didn’t seriously damage my career, bankrupt me with hired help, or trap me in the same apartment as my parents—as it is customary in China for family to move in to help offset the burden of new parenthood.
I will never know how my life would have played out in the pre-coronavirus world, however, because the pandemic completely reshuffled my options.
Read more here.
Thursday, May 28, 2020
On average, there are about 3,000 children each month in foster care in Alaska, according to Denali Family Services. The month of May is all about bringing awareness to these children. The unique challenges these kids and their foster parents face, can be magnified during the uncertain times of a pandemic.
"Every child in foster care has a story. Some are worse than others, but there isn't one of them that is good-- not one," said Raymond Gauthier.
Raymond Gauthier is one of the people trying to bring happy endings to those stories. he's a therapeutic foster parent with Denali Family Services. He and his wife have cared for more children than they can count over the past eight years. Currently, they're caring for three, all under the age of sixteen.
"It's been very challenging having three children in our home taking care of their recreational needs and activities," said Gauthier. "Their social life is really diminished."
In addition to adapting to social distancing from friends, and video calls with clinicians and case workers-- an important staple in some foster children's lives, family visits, have scaled back.
Read more here.
Wednesday, May 27, 2020
5 years since Ireland voted Yes to marriage equality, Tiernan Brady talks winning campaigns, facing down the Murdoch press, and the power of corporations to do good.
Fresh off the winning referendum to gain marriage equality in Ireland, Tiernan Brady was approached by the fledgling Australian marriage equality movement. Over a few bottles of wine in wintry London he agreed to visit the team down under, and when he came home two weeks later he handed in his notice, packed his bags, and flew straight back.
Brady’s career, by his own admission, doesn’t travel in a straight line, and at multiple junctures in his life Brady has found himself pursuing something that would’ve been unimaginable to him 6 months – or even 6 days – prior. Having gone from elected official to international campaigner, and now in his new role spearheading diversity for one of the world’s top 10 law firms, his advice to others is simply - don’t make a plan.
Read more here.
Tuesday, May 26, 2020
The singer who doesn't like to show the world her face is giving us a glimpse of her heart.
Sunday, May 24, 2020
From Daily News:
A Manhattan couple has become the first to file for divorce in New York City during the lockdown, two days before city courts are expected to lift the floodgates and allow non-emergency cases to resume, the Daily News has learned.
The divorce judgement signed by the county clerk Wednesday was deemed an essential matter by Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Michael Katz, allowing it to go forward while the court system is still operating in a limited capacity, court papers show.
“My client was very much in a desperate situation, and this was one way that could rectify that situation for her,” divorce attorney Morghan Richardson told the Daily News.
“She was so relieved, she was crying,” Richardson said. “Because this is tied to an immigration issue. Had we not been successful in getting this divorce entered, it really would have had dire consequences on her life.”
With the courts being run by a skeleton crew, Richardson had to resort to unique measures to get the divorce papers signed by Judge Katz.
“I asked him if I could drive to wherever he was comfortable meeting me in public, so that I could get the papers from him, and he graciously was willing to let me pick up the paperwork from his doorman,” she said.
Read more here.
Saturday, May 23, 2020
Read more here.
Hat Tip: CR
From the San Francisco Chronicle:
Public health officials in Santa Cruz are investigating four discrete clusters of COVID-19 infections, all associated with family gatherings, including a multigenerational Mother’s Day celebration.
The flare-ups likely triggered last week’s 20 % surge in the county’s case count, a sudden explosion after weeks of relatively flat growth. The week saw 31 new cases, the biggest spike since shelter-in-place orders took effect. The most recent county data, from Thursday, shows 186 total cases so far.
Regulators hope the upswing is a blip. Even as the county gradually loosens its rules, enabling businesses to do curbside pickup and opening child care facilities for families of essential workers, it still bans get-togethers of any size. The Mother's Day bash and three other events all violated the orders, said county spokesman Jason Hoppin.
Read more here.
Friday, May 22, 2020
Lawmakers and government officials in Costa Rica on Wednesday chided fellow politicians trying to delay a landmark gay marriage ruling from taking effect, an effort which ended in a punch-up between members of a leading political party.
Costa Rica’s constitutional court voted in August 2018 to legalize gay marriage, with the ruling to take effect on May 26 of this year.
The decision made Costa Rica the first country in socially conservative Central America to recognize that right of same sex couples to marry.
On Tuesday, more than 20 lawmakers attempted to introduce a motion to delay the ruling another 18 months, arguing legislators had not had enough time to review the decision because of other issues, including the novel coronavirus.
Read more here.
Tuesday, May 19, 2020
Breger, Sorensen, Asal, & Willis; "Corporal Punishment, Social Norms and Norm Cascades: Examining Cross-National Laws and Trends in Homes Across the Globe"
Melissa L. Breger (Albany Law School), Lucy Sorensen (University at Albany (SUNY)), Victor Asal (State University of New York at Albany), & Charmaine Willis (Rockefeller College of Public Affairs and Policy University of Albany) have recently posted to SSRN their paper Corporal Punishment, Social Norms and Norm Cascades: Examining Cross-National Laws and Trends in Homes Across the Globe, 26 William & Mary Journal of Race, Gender, and Social Justice 1 (2020). Here is the abstract:
For centuries, parents across the globe have utilized corporal punishment against children in the name of discipline. This Article is the first legal article to examine cross-national trends in child corporal punishment laws and to propose ideas for reducing its practice using the social norms approach. By examining 192 countries over a 46-year period, we shed light on emerging patterns. Additionally, by delving into countries’ self-reports regarding their compliance with the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) treaty, we observe other unique patterns globally.
Notably, during the course of our empirical research and data collection (2017–2019), significant moves to decrease the prevalence of child corporal punishment have emerged, such as the 2019 legislation in Japan seeking to outlaw the practice of child corporal punishment in Japanese homes, and the 2018 American Association for Pediatricians Statement asserting its first public admonishment of physical discipline against children in the home.
In our analysis, we utilize the country of Sweden — the first country worldwide to ban outright corporal punishment in the home — as our first case study to delve into the concept of norm cascades. We then showcase the country of Ethiopia — a country making great strides in changing societal norms about corporal punishment through public dissemination of literature and norm campaigns — as our second case study to examine concepts of re-norming. In conclusion, we demonstrate how social norms theories may be utilized to decrease the use and societal acceptance of child corporal punishment in the home.
Monday, May 18, 2020
From the Atlantic:
My husband is a self-employed architect; we are roughly equal earners. Until a few weeks ago, child care was the biggest line item in our monthly budget. At times we have spent more on it than we could rationally afford, a fact about which I have felt largely unconflicted. I have respect for parents who choose to stay home with kids, and respect and empathy for those who have no choice in the matter. But more than once, I’ve joked that my only regret about hiring Finn’s first, beloved babysitter when he was four months old was not having hired her sooner. My best advice to pregnant friends is to line up child care. You don’t have to do this alone, I tell them. Subtext: I cannot do this alone.
It took me about three days of being home with my boys to recognize that our new lifestyle was not completely without precedent. Certain aspects of confinement had an eerie familiarity: the 24/7 relentlessness, the isolation, the satisfaction of small domestic victories. I’d done this before—twice, on maternity leave.
On one late-night, wine-fueled Zoom call, I listened to my women friends commiserate. One had lost her job; another suspected hers might be next. A third, a midwife, was delivering babies in a hospital with insufficient protective gear, worrying about what she was bringing home to her kids. All, meanwhile, were managing families and schooling young children. So I felt sheepish sharing the idea taking shape in my mind, that somehow I wasn’t hating this time as much as I was supposed to. I’d begun to wonder, in fact, if it was a reset that my family—or really, that I as a mother—sorely needed. Maybe I didn’t have to scramble for new assignments. Maybe I could reframe quarantine. It could be my third maternity leave.
As for the children’s perspective, I’m pretty sure social distancing is the greatest thing that ever happened to them, the windfall of their short lives. They get all of us almost all the time. Finn chatters about his friends, but little evidence suggests that either of them misses school. This realization is, for me, bittersweet. I can’t think about how happy our kids are to be with us—just us—without acknowledging the fact that that’s the one thing we’ve never given them. It is the one thing that is truly off the table.
I’ve always relied on a convenient certainty that preschool is a win-win. High-energy as they are, surely our pups would chew the legs off the table if we kept them at home, and they’d miss out on the early socialization that I’m convinced (and remain convinced) has put them on the road to becoming tolerable human beings. But the truth is, they are there not because that’s what they need. They’re there because that’s what we need. And when school reopens, they’ll be right back there again. I’m okay with that, but maybe not as okay as I used to be. Yes, I have to work to pay the bills, and I’ve always known that working is essential to my sanity and sense of self. But now I have a keener sense of what my boys—and I—will be missing.
Read more here.
Sunday, May 17, 2020
From the Atlantic:
It’s hard to imagine a set of circumstances that would facilitate abuse so much as the ones we’ve been living under. For one thing, people are stressed. They’re getting sick, losing loved ones, or worrying about getting sick or losing loved ones. The income loss many have experienced only adds to the daily anxiety. Plus, school cancellations mean that many parents have lost their regular affordable child care. Financial strain has been linked to increases in the frequency and severity of domestic abuse, and a 1 percent increase in the unemployment rate leads to a 25 percent increase in child neglect and a 12 percent increase in physical abuse, one study found. Other research has suggested that the stress from catastrophic events like natural disasters can also increase the risk of domestic and family violence. All of this adds up to a potentially dangerous situation for those who live with their abusers—even before you consider the current lockdown protocols.
Read more here.
Saturday, May 16, 2020
On March 26, 2021, the Columbia Journal of Race and Law will host a symposium, Strengthened Bonds: Abolishing the Child Welfare System and Re-Envisioning Child Well-Being. The symposium honors the 20th anniversary of Shattered Bonds: The Color of Child Welfare by Dorothy Roberts and is co-chaired by Nancy Polikoff (American) and Jane Spinak (Columbia). Professor Roberts will deliver the keynote address.
Since the publication of Shattered Bonds at the beginning of this century, reform efforts have focused on making the current child welfare system work better without fundamentally challenging its existence. This symposium is an opportunity to critique this limited reform approach and consider radical change to re-imagine how society cares for and protects children while honoring their bonds to their families and communities. The prison abolition movement has produced a robust body of scholarship. Strengthened Bonds seeks to generate equally insightful, imaginative, and important scholarship in support of abolishing the child welfare system and creating a radically new approach to child well-being.
The organizers encourage papers from all disciplines and from community members and activists. We will consider traditional articles, essays, and pairing authors with responders, as well as interest in participating in the symposium and then submitting a response. The deadline for abstracts and expressions of interest is July 1, 2020. The complete call for papers and instructions for submission of abstracts is on the Journal website. For questions, email co-chairs Nancy Polikoff, [email protected], and Jane Spinak, [email protected]
Friday, May 15, 2020
Editors Julie Novkov (University at Albany, SUNY) & Carol Nackenoff (Swarthmore College) recently published their book Stating the Family: New Directions in the Study of American Politics, available for purchase at Barnes & Noble here. The book's table of contents is as follows:
Foreword: Responsibility for the Well-Being of Families, Joan Tronto
Introduction. Stated Families, Family Stakes: The Family, the American State, and Political Development, Julie Novkov and Carol Nackenoff
1. Democracy and Family, June Carbone and Naomi Cahn
2. Obergefell, Marriage, and the Neoliberal Politics of Care, Tamara Metz
3. Constituting Families: Marriage Equality Activism and the Role of the State, Ellen Ann Andersen
4. The Legal Construction of Motherhood and Paternity: Interracial Unions and the Color Line in Antebellum Louisiana, Gwendoline Alphonso and Richard Bensel
5. A "Bridge to Our Daughters": Title IX Fathers and Policy Development, Elizabeth Sharrow
6. The Feudal Family versus American Political Development: From Separate Spheres to Woman Suffrage, Eileen McDonagh
7. Building the Administrative State: Courts and the Admission of chinese Persons to the United States, 1870s-1920s, Carol Nackenoff and Julie Novkov
8. Deportability and (Dis)unification: Family Status and US Immigration Policy, Alison Gash and Priscilla Yamin
Conclusion, Julie Novkov and Carol Nackenoff
Thursday, May 14, 2020
From the New York Times:
Sian-Pierre Regis, 35, is used to living with roommates. For the past 10 years, he has split the rent on his apartment in the Chelsea neighborhood of Manhattan with two (in some cases, three) friends. But in June, he’s getting a co-tenant of a different sort: his 78-year-old mother, Rebecca Danigelis.
“I don’t think either of us expected to be in this situation,” said Mr. Regis, a freelance filmmaker. His mother worked for over 40 years as a hotel housekeeper, rising to a management position, until her job was abruptly eliminated three years ago.
Since then, she has lived off her slim retirement savings (she liquidated most of her 401(k) to pay Mr. Regis’s college tuition in 2002) and whatever part-time cleaning jobs she could find. When the coronavirus pandemic hit, she again was out of work, and at the end of May, the lease on her subsidized housing in Boston will expire. She can’t afford the rent.
“I don’t know what she could have done better, or how she could have prevented this,” Mr. Regis said. “She worked long hours, never called in sick and cleaned houses to make extra money when she wasn’t at her hotel job. She had no vices.”
Read more here.
Wednesday, May 13, 2020
From the New Yorker:
Relationships are hard, even when we are not in the midst of a global pandemic. Nobody knows this more intimately than the Belgian psychotherapist and author Esther Perel, whose hit podcast, “Where Should We Begin?” allows listeners to play fly on the wall as she conducts actual couples’ therapy sessions. Perel is also the author of the best-selling books “Mating in Captivity,” about sex within monogamous relationships, and “The State of Affairs,” about navigating infidelity. In late March, as countries across the globe were enacting social-distancing measures, she launched a special podcast series called “Couples Under Lockdown.” In the series so far, Perel has done therapy sessions with couples in Italy, Belgium, and New York City, counselling them through the challenges of this very anxious, and often exasperating, time. “If we want to look at the challenges of communication, of sexuality, of desire, of conflict in relationships, this is such a Petri-dish moment,” Perel told me recently over Zoom. During our conversation, which has been edited and condensed, we spoke about how to fight with your partner during quarantine, how to go on dates from home, what to do if your partner’s habits are driving you insane, and how to maintain a sense of self when you can’t escape each other.
You’ve often pointed out that too much is expected of modern relationships: your partner is supposed to be your best friend and your lover and your psychotherapist and your child-care co-worker and, you know, your dishwasher. Everything. And those roles, historically, used to be spread out within communal structures. And it seems like this pandemic has only magnified the degree to which we’re forced to rely on our partners.
I think that, really, what is essential at this moment, especially when we have just one person to give us what an entire village should be providing, is that we create boundaries, routines, and rituals. There needs to be, as best as possible, a separation between daytime and evening, week time and weekend, working time and idle time, family time and individual time, moments that are task oriented and moments where we stop for a bit. When we’re going to eat, are we going to reset the table or just push our work stuff away a little bit so that we have room to put a plate down? I think that, more than ever, the routine that creates a structure, that brings a certain sense of order in a world that feels so chaotic and so unsure, is crucial. The ritual is what separates the ordinary and the mundane from something that becomes more elevated, more separated, more sacred. All of these three things are essential.
Some of my friends have commented that being at home with their partners has made some of the “invisible work” they do, which their partners took for granted, quite visible. For example, they’re, like, “Who did you think cleans the house and does the dishes? Suddenly, you see all that that I’m doing.” Or, vice versa, maybe someone says, “You have finally seen what I do at work. And you see how hard I work. And you’re not acknowledging it.” What effect does that have, to have these things suddenly visible in a new way?
What is happening now, in this expanded view of ourselves and of our partners, can go in two directions. In one direction, you say, “I’m curious. Tell me more. I never knew. I really appreciate it. I realize how clueless I was, how I let you do everything.” And it becomes really a source of connection. In the other version, it becomes a source of blame: “You want me to tell you how much I’ve been doing? I just did the laundry! I just cleaned the sinks! You would just live in a pigsty! What’s the matter with you?” You begin to complain in such a way that insures that the other person is going to try to chew you out as fast as possible, and you’re not going to get the help.
This brings me to the question of how people should fight. Couples are going to get into arguments and log jams during this time. But you literally can’t walk away. I’m wondering how you are seeing couples work through things when they cannot physically separate.
You don’t need to have a door to leave the house. You can be somewhere there without being absolutely present. I think that couples, by definition, go through harmony, disharmony, and repair. This is a dance that we do no matter what. By definition, we fight. What matters is how you fight. When you get really mad at something, can you afterward say, “O.K., got that out of my system—how are we going to solve this?” or “Look, I realize I was quite unfair. Let me first say what I do appreciate about what you do before I dump on you the whole list of stuff that I don’t think you do.” That’s why I play this little exercise of ten yeses and ten nos, which my colleague Dan Siegel taught me. It’s so powerful. Because if you start with the yes, you will fight differently. You will actually have a different argument. You can diffuse it with humor.
Begin by saying to yourself, “What are the one or two things that they have done that I can appreciate?” Otherwise, it’s whatever is negative I will highlight, and whatever is positive I will take for granted. If we made it on time, it’s because there was no traffic, and, if we got there late, it’s because of you. The negative is attributed to the other person, and the positive is just taken as “that’s the way it should be.”
And you can be all entitled about this and say, “Well, there’s no reason I should appreciate that, because I have done a whole bunch of things, and you haven’t appreciated them either.” But the productive thing is to start with you. You want to change the other? You change you.
What else can you say about how to fight better?
Stay focussed on the task. When you want to talk about the dishes, don’t end up talking about five different things, two of which are years old. Don’t “kitchen-sink” it. Keep yourself to the one thing that you’re upset about at this moment.
Also, make a request and not just a protest. Tell your partner, “I really wanted you to do this. I counted on you. Can we agree you’ll do it by twelve o’clock today?” Fight from a place of enlightened self-interest, as [the family therapist] Terry Real says, not just to get it out of your system. To get it out of your system, call your friends. Vent as much as you want. And then go back to your partner and be strategic about it. Because you don’t just want to get it out of your system. You actually want a change.
How about sex: There are jokes going around about how many babies will be born in nine months, just so many babies, but how do you create space for sexuality when you are trapped indoors with pets, kids, jobs, etc.?
There are such myths that need to be debunked around what actually preserves erotic interest in a couple. The idea that there is no mystery because I’m in the same room with you is somewhat true, if you simply think that being away from the person is enough. By definition, we need to create that space. For those who have little kids in the house, look at what they do: they don’t need to leave the house to suddenly become the captain of a ship, or the officer of the fortress, or the driver of the truck. They just enter into a character, and, from that “play mode” through their imagination, they transcend all the borders and the limitations of reality. It is the same with the erotic mind. It is the adult version of what children do when they play.
Read more here.
Tuesday, May 12, 2020
From the New York Times:
The acrimonious split of Masha and Ronnie Shak ended up where many divorces do these days — on Facebook.
As the proceedings unfolded, Mr. Shak offered a running commentary on social media, shared with the couple’s rabbi, assistant rabbi and members of their synagogue, court documents show.
He created a GoFundMe page entitled “Help me KEEP MY SON.” He called his ex-wife an “evil liar.” He illustrated the posts with a video of their one-year-old son, and told their friends to unfriend her.
That was until a probate court judge banned Mr. Shak from posting on social media about his divorce, a common practice known as a nondisparagement order.
A ruling this week by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court, stemming from the Shaks’ divorce, found such bans to be unconstitutional, a decision that could have broad implications in the state.
“As important as it is to protect a child from the emotional and psychological harm that might follow from one parent’s use of vulgar or disparaging words about the other, merely reciting that interest is not enough to satisfy the heavy burden” of restricting speech, Justice Kimberly S. Budd wrote in a 13-page ruling.
Jennifer M. Lamanna, a lawyer who represented Mr. Shak in the appeal, called the ruling a “game-changer” because family and probate judges in the state frequently give such orders, and treat violations as contempt of court, carrying severe penalties.
Read more here.
Hat Tip: CR
Monday, May 11, 2020
Margaret Ryznar (IU McKinney) has recently posted to SSRN her paper What Works in Online Teaching, St. Louis L.J. (forthcoming 2021). Here is the abstract:
This Article offers lessons from an empirical study of an Online Trusts & Estates course. More than 280 law students were surveyed over three semesters on what works well for them and what does not in this online course. Their top three answers in each category serve as guidance for faculty creating online courses.