Friday, August 29, 2014
The U.S. Feminist Judgments Project seeks contributors of revised opinions and commentary for an edited collection entitled Feminist Judgments: Rewritten Opinions of the United States Supreme Court. This edited volume is a collaborative project among feminist law professors and others to rewrite, from a feminist perspective, key Supreme Court decisions relevant to gender issues. Editors Kathy Stanchi, Linda Berger, and Bridget Crawford seek prospective authors for 20 to 25 rewritten Supreme Court opinions covering a range of topics including reproductive rights, equal protection, the state’s use of criminal power, privacy, the family, women’s political participation, Title IX, employment discrimination and substantive due process. The editors also seek authors for commentaries of 1,500 to 2,500 words to put into context each of the rewritten cases.
The U.S. Feminist Judgments project was inspired by the successful collection and publication in Britain of Feminist Judgments: From Theory to Practice, edited by Rosemary Hunter, Clare McGlynn, and Erika Rackley. This volume, which included feminist versions of twenty-three key British decisions from the Court of Appeal and House of Lords, was published in 2010 and has been very well received. Like the sister project in Britain, the U.S. Feminist Judgments Project endeavors to pioneer “a new form of critical socio-legal scholarship” that illustrates how cases could have been decided differently had a feminist method been employed. We believe that U.S. Supreme Court law is ripe for this kind of scholarly treatment.
Those who are interested in rewriting an opinion or providing the commentary on one of the rewritten opinions must apply by September 15, 2014 at 5:00 p.m. eastern. Click here for the application.
Editors will notify accepted authors and commentators by October 7, 2014. First drafts of rewritten opinions will be due on February 1, 2015. First drafts of comments on the rewritten opinions will be due on March 15, 2015. The editors are in the process of identifying a publisher; publication of the final volume is anticipated for late 2015.
Applicants may indicate their preferences among the list of cases posted here. Applicants also may suggest other cases for rewriting. The tentative cases were chosen with the input and advice of an Advisory Panel of distinguished U.S. scholars including Kathryn Abrams, Katharine Bartlett,Devon Carbado, Mary Anne Case, Erwin Chemerinsky, April Cherry, Kimberlé Crenshaw, Martha Fineman, Margaret Johnson, Sonia Katyal, Nancy Leong, Catharine MacKinnon, Rachel Moran, Melissa Murray, Angela Onwuachi-Willig, Nancy Polikoff, Dorothy Roberts, Dan Rodriguez, Susan Ross, Vicki Schultz, Dean Spade, Robin West, and Verna Williams.
h/t Kathryn Stanchi (mew)
Thursday, August 28, 2014
Monday, August 25, 2014
Coleen Barger has been named Ben J. Altheimer Distinguished Professor of Law at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock. Among her many contributions to the legal writing field, she is a co-author of the ALWD Citation Guide and is a founder of the Journal of Appellate Practice and Process. She's also an editor emeritus of the Legal Writing Prof Blog.
(jdf and mew)
Thursday, August 21, 2014
The fall issue of Legal Communication and Rhetoric: JALWD arrived in my mailbox today with lots of interesting articles. One that caught my eye is Hawking Hyphens in Compound Modifiers. Its author, Joan Magat, urges readers to hyphenate phrasal adjectives, asserting that the practice is “never incorrect.” To show how hyphens clarify compound adjectives, she provides as examples the phrases common-law rule and legal-writing curriculum, which would be ambiguous without the hyphens. The issue also contains an article by Heidi Brown titled Converting Benchslaps to Backslaps, in which Prof. Brown explains the origin of the term benchslap (the subject of yesterday's post).
Wednesday, August 20, 2014
From a federal district court decision authored by Judge Harry D. Leinenweber:
The Court would like to make an observation. The parties should consider long and hard before requesting leave to amend any of the dismissed counts other than Counterclaim V. To say that the parties, particularly the Plaintiff, have attempted to plead the kitchen sink with respect to what appears to be a relatively simple employment case, is to understate the obvious. The Court would suggest to the parties, particularly the Plaintiff, to consider the problems associated with instructing a jury with such a mishmash of legal theories. To expect a jury to wade though the necessary issue instructions, together with the explanatory and definitional instructions would be monumental. Enough said!
Simmons v. Ditto Trade, Inc., 2014 WL 3889022 (N.D. Ill. Aug. 8, 2014).
Thursday, August 14, 2014
Linda Edwards of UNLV has published a new book titled Readings in Persuasion: Briefs That Changed the World. As Lucille Jewell’s review of the book explains, it presents briefs from real cases, including Loving v. Virginia and Lawrence v. Texas, infused with context. Jewell writes that “Students who use this book will form independent conclusions of advocacy approaches employed by the brief authors.”
Monday, August 4, 2014
The July ABA Journal contains an informative interview with Judge Richard Posner of the Seventh Circuit. Legal advocates will be interested in Judge Posner’s comment that judges “are not good at . . . preventing personal experiences of various sorts—emotions, deeply held beliefs, etc.—from influencing decisions.” He also said that when judges lack sufficient information about a case, they “necessarily fall back on how [they] ‘feel’ about a case.” Posner also observed that he has changed his views over the years: "I'm much less reactionary than I used to be." That's appropriate, he says--judges should be willing to change their minds.
Saturday, August 2, 2014
The Law Library of Congress has a new website, Congress.gov. The new website makes it easier to search for information about federal legislation. It's pretty easy to use. Go on, have a look at www.congress.gov. It's pretty cool. And you're going to have to tell your students about it anyway.