Panel: On The Front Lines of Law Reform

On The Front Lines of Law Reform

Editor’s Note: The following panel was held during Harvard Law School’s “Celebration 60,” which honored the 60th anniversary of the first women graduates at HLS. 

Please click here for a PDF version of the article.

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Windsor, Federalism, and the Future of Marriage Litigation

Windsor, Federalism, and the Future of Marriage Litigation

Mark Strasser*


In United States v. Windsor,[1] the United States Supreme Court struck down section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA).[2] Now that section 3 has been invalidated, section 2 of DOMA may also be challenged.[3] The constitutionality of DOMA section 2 was not before the Windsor Court, so the Court could not have been expected to address its validity directly. Nonetheless, the Windsor opinion provides surprisingly little express guidance with respect to whether section 2 also violates constitutional guarantees.[4] Further complicating any analysis of that section’s validity is that the section has not been authoritatively construed. The constitutionality of section 2 (and even its being subject to challenge) will depend greatly on its authoritative interpretation and, in addition, on a clear articulation of the constraints, if any, on the power of a state to refuse to recognize a marriage validly celebrated in a sister domicile. If section 2 is construed narrowly and is found not to afford states a power that they do not already possess, then it would seem immune from challenge; however, in that event, a key provision of several state mini-DOMAs will lose even the veneer of legality. Continue reading “Windsor, Federalism, and the Future of Marriage Litigation”

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Transforming Campus Culture to Prevent Rape: the Possibility and Promise of Restorative Justice as a Response to Campus Sexual Violence

Transforming Campus Culture to Prevent Rape: the Possibility and Promise of Restorative Justice as a Response to Campus Sexual Violence

Alletta Brenner[1]


Though feminists have long argued that rape is linked to sex discrimination,[2] legal responses to rape tend to ignore the ways that social and cultural norms contribute to sexual violence.[3] One exception, however, exists in the context of federal anti-discrimination law under Title IX, which applies to colleges and universities that receive federal funds. Under the legal framework established by Title IX, rape constitutes a form of severe sexual harassment, to which educational institutions are legally obligated to respond.[4] An institution’s failure to do so is considered evidence of sex discrimination and may subject it to both federal penalties and civil liability.[5] Recently, this obligation was further strengthened by the passage of legislation that codifies particular aspects of what campus grievance processes for rape survivors must include and requires schools to take affirmative steps to transform campus culture to prevent rape.[6]

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Unsex Mothering: Online Colloquium

 For those who missed our conference on February 13th, please see the live blog and a video of the conference.

On Monday, February 13, 2012, the Harvard Journal of Law & Gender hosted a conference at Harvard Law School featuring Darren Rosenblum’s article Unsex Mothering: Toward a New Culture of Parenting, published in the journal’s Winter 2012 edition. The author discussed his piece, with responses from Professor Duncan Kennedy (HLS), Professor Mary Anne Case (U. Chicago), Professor Elizabeth Emens (Columbia), Professor Suzanne Kim (Rutgers), and Katherine Kraschel (HLS ’12).

The journal also solicited written responses from twenty scholars in the field for an online colloquium. These responses are linked below. To read Unsex Mothering, please click here.

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Unsex Mothering Responses: Kimberly Mutcherson

  Unsexing Care: Beyond Gendered Parenting Terms A Response to Darren Rosenblum’s Unsex Mothering: Toward a Culture of New Parenting Kimberly Mutcherson[1] One thing that can be expected from a formerly pregnant man is interesting commentary about the parenting experience that follows that pregnancy.  Professor Rosenblum’s piece, Unsex Mothering: Toward a New Culture of Parenting,[2] […]

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Unsex Mothering Responses: Elizabeth M. Schneider

  The Conundrums of Unsexing Parenting A Response to Darren Rosenblum’s Unsex Mothering: Toward a Culture of New Parenting Elizabeth M. Schneider[1] Darren Rosenblum’s interesting and provocative article, Unsexing Mothering: Toward A New Culture of Parenting,[2] raised many issues for me, personally and intellectually.  As a long-time feminist legal activist and biological mother who has […]

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Unsex Mothering Responses: Beth Jones

  Un-Sexing Single Mother Parenting of Boys A Response to Darren Rosenblum’s Unsex Mothering: Toward a Culture of New Parenting Beth Jones Rosenblum’s article, Unsex Mothering,[1] applies in some ways to every different type of parenting.  As a single mother of twin eleven-year-old boys, I personally relate most to the portions regarding single parents and non-traditional parenting.  When […]

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