Yale Law School to Host National Symposium on Same-Sex Marriage

Yale Law School will host a public discussion titled “Breaking With Tradition: New Frontiers for Same Sex Marriage,” March 4–5.

Yale Law School will host a public discussion titled “Breaking With Tradition: New Frontiers for Same Sex Marriage,” March 4–5.

The event is free for Yale students, faculty and affiliates as well as their domestic partners or spouses. There is a $25 registration fee for non–university attendees. Pre–registration is required for all attendees, including members of the media, at http://www.law.yale.edu/samesexmarriage.

The symposium will assemble a national cross–section of scholars, practitioners, activists and law students from diverse backgrounds and positions to generate informed debate of the key issues surrounding same–sex marriage. Experts from Yale Law School, Harvard University, Columbia University, Georgetown University, Northwestern University, New York University, Brigham Young University, Dartmouth College, the American Civil Liberties Union, Lambda Legal, the Human Rights Campaign and the National Center for Lesbian Rights will participate in the event.

“The ‘Breaking With Tradition’ symposium is an ideal place to take stock of the national same–sex marriage movement,” says Yale law student Jason J. Smith, one of the event coordinators. “Our goal is to engage discussion on how same–sex marriage advocates can best move forward on a grassroots, regional and national level.”

During the symposium, panels will discuss a wide range of issues, from the political valence of same–sex marriage for both its proponents and opponents to the role of federalism in shaping the debate.

The conference will open at 5 p.m. on March 4 with a panel, moderated by Ed Stein, professor at Cardozo Law School, on how the same–sex marriage issue has emerged in the context of changing cultural norms related to traditional marriage and, more generally, the ongoing “culture war” between conservative and liberal movements.

Jon W. Davidson, legal director of Lambda Legal, will deliver the keynote speech on March 5 at 4:30 p.m. Known for his litigation successes in protecting the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered persons and those with HIV, Davidson will discuss the future of same–sex marriage, and how it may unfold through litigation and legislative reform.

These and 20 other speakers will consider key questions, including: How do notions of same sex marriage manifest for people of different races and genders? How does religion inform these perceptions? How should the government be involved in structuring or regulating relationships of intimacy and dependence? How have other nations responded to the issue of same–sex marriages, and what lessons can the U.S. learn from their experiences?

For more information, including a complete schedule, see http://www.law.yale.edu/samesexmarriage.

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Media Contact

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