Yale Law School to Host Critical Race Theory Conference

Yale Law School will host a conference marking the 10th anniversary of Critical Race Theory. The conference runs from Thursday, Nov. 13, through Saturday, Nov. 15, at 127 Wall St.

Critical Race Theory is a loose community of scholars who assert that Western society is characterized by persistent racial oppression, which law plays a significant role in creating and maintaining. The first explicit discussion of Critical Race Theory took place in 1987, with the publication of a symposium issue of the Harvard Civil Rights P Civil Liberties Law Review titled “Minority Critiques of the Critical Legal Studies Movement.”

Conference organizers from law schools at Yale, Duke, Boston University, the University of California at Berkeley, Santa Clara University, the University of Miami, and the University of Hawaii will welcome scholars from across North America for three days of lectures, plenary sessions and panel discussions on aspects of Critical Race Theory, its history, and its future. Critical Race Theory will also be discussed in the context of newer movements, including Queer Theory and LatCrit Theory.

Conference speakers include:

* Lani Guinier, Law ‘74, professor of law at the University of Pennsylvania, whose nomination by President Clinton to head the Justice Department’s civil rights division was withdrawn.

* Derrick Bell, visiting professor at New York University School of Law and author of several books, including “Confronting Authority: Reflections of an Ardent Professor” and “Race, Racism and American Law.”

* Patricia Williams, professor of Law at Columbia University and author of several books, including “The Alchemy of Race and Rights” and “The Rooster’s Egg.”

Three plenary sessions will be held during the conference. The first, on Friday morning at 9 a.m., is titled “Looking Back, Looking Forward.” It will feature Kimberle Crenshaw and Mari Matsuda, with commentary from Catharine MacKinnon and Duncan Kennedy. Gerald Torres will moderate.

The Saturday morning plenary session, beginning at 9 a.m., is titled “CRT and Indigenous Peoples.” Speakers at that session include John Borrows, Patricia Monture, Kekailoa Perry, and Estevan Rael y Galvez. Moderator is Jo Carrillo. On Saturday at 1:30 p.m., the final plenary session, “Critical Coalitions,” will feature conference organizers Harlon Dalton, Frank Valdes and Eric Yamamoto, along with Julie Su.

Concurrent panels are scheduled around the plenary sessions. Offerings include “CRT and International Human Rights,” “Race, Suspicion, and Criminal Law,” “Breaking Ground: Sexuality Discourses and Critical Race Theory,” “Race, Power, and the Reliable Verdict,” “The Future of the Concept of ‘Race,’” and “Crime, Race, Family, and Other Dimensions.”

The conference is open to the public. The registration fee is $135; $75 for students. For more information about registration and schedules, please contact Roberta Hudson, Yale University Conference Services, at 203/432-0465.

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Media Contact

Gila Reinstein: gila.reinstein@yale.edu, 203-432-1325