Tuesday, November 17, 2015
Catherine Martin Christopher (Texas Tech), Putting Legal Writing on the Tenure Track: One School's Experience, 31 Colum. J. Gender & L. 65 (2015):
This Article discusses the statistics behind the gendered segregation of law school faculties, in which women occupy a disproportionate number of legal writing and other low-status positions, while men continue to hold a disproportionate number of tenured faculty positions. The Article explores the rationales for and against converting legal writing faculty to tenure-track, and shares one law school’s experience of doing so. The Article then suggests lessons and approaches that other schools may wish to take in converting their own legal writing faculty to tenure-track positions.
Legal writing faculty deserve tenured status for a host of reasons: academic freedom, participation in law school governance, recognition of the importance of the subject matter they teach, and rectification of the historical sexism that segregated them from the rest of the faculty. It is my hope that Texas Tech’s decision to convert its legal writing faculty to tenure-track positions will serve as an example and catalyst for other law schools to follow suit. In this way, law schools can take advantage of the gender diversity already in the building and progress toward equality among all faculty.