Tag Archives: Danielle Citron

Danielle Citron and Robin West: On Legal Scholarship

This brief essay  by Danielle Citron (Maryland) and Robin West (Georgetown) makes several important points about the value of legal scholarship. Citron and West discuss some of the ways that legal scholarship has quite directly affected the development of the law. Sexual harassment law is a well-known example:

“[I]t is easy to find concrete proof of the impact of normative legal scholarship – recognition that sexual harassment of women in the workplace was discrimination under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 was debated, thought through and articulated by scholars before it was embraced by courts, legislators and regulators.”

Along the same lines as Citron and West, Jack Chin has collected a number of other examples of the impact of scholarship on the law here and here (scroll down for Chin’s series of seven posts about work cited by the Supreme Court). In light of these examples to the contrary, those who claim that legal scholarship does not influence the development of the law must explain away a considerable amount of evidence to the contrary. Continue reading

Danielle Citron: “Hate Crimes in Cyberspace”

I recently finished reading “Hate Crimes in Cyberspace,” an important new book by Danielle Keats Citron. I hope to write up some thoughts here in the coming weeks. For now, I simply want to recommend that everyone read the book. It’s compelling, thoughtful, and timely. And in the meantime, the Guardian has an excellent review by Katharine Quarmby. Here’s an excerpt:

In Sartre’s play his three unhappy characters are trapped, without an exit. But we have one. The law, Citron writes, has what she calls an “expressive value” – it helps us distinguish between right and wrong, and it can result in offenders being put behind bars. Site operators can remove the anonymity of trolls and delete abusive speech. But the heavy lifting comes down to us, trapped in the virtual room with one another.