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Pamela S. Karlan - February 24, 2011

Pamela S. Karlan

Kenneth and Harle Montgomery Professor of Public Interest Law and Co-Director, Supreme Court Litigation Clinic, Stanford University

"Keeping Faith with the Constitution"

8:00 PM Thursday, February 24, 2011
University Theatre

A co-author of Keeping Faith with the Constitution (2009), Professor Karlan has been a penetrating critic of the constitutional doctrine of original intent, according to which, in the words of historian, Joseph J. Ellis, “the ‘miracle at Philadelphia’ was a uniquely omniscient occasion when 55 mere mortals were permitted a glimpse of the eternal verities and then embalmed their insights in the document.” She takes the Jeffersonian view that the Constitution should be interpreted as a living document meant to serve the needs of an evolving society, not as a mummified relic, too sacred to be touched.

Please note: These lectures will not be posted online and a podcast will not be made available.

"The Gay and the Angry: The Supreme Court and the Battle Surrounding Same-Sex Marriage"

3:40 PM Saturday, February 26, 2011
Gallagher Business Building 123

You are cordially invited to attend a seminar with Pamela S. Karlan, a 1984 graduate of the Yale Law School. Before joining the Stanford Law School faculty in 1998, she was a professor of law at the University of Virginia and served as a law clerk to Justice Harry A. Blackmun of the United States Supreme Court and Judge Abraham D. Sofaer of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York. She is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and of the American Law Institute. She is on the Board of Directors for the American Constitution Society and delivered the keynote address at its 2009 national convention.

Professor Karlan has been a co-author of the following books: Keeping Faith with the Constitution (2009), The Law of Democracy: Legal Structure of the Political Process (2007), Civil Rights Actions: Enforcing the Constitution, 2cd ed. (2007),and Constitutional Law, 5th ed. (2005). Her areas of expertise include Antidiscrimination Law, Civil Procedure and Litigation, Clinical Education, Constitutional Law, Criminal Procedure, Employment Discrimination, Race and the Law, and the Supreme Court. She has been a penetrating critic of the constitutional doctrine of original intent, according to which, in the words of historian, Joseph J. Ellis, “the 'miracle at Philadelphia' was a uniquely omniscient occasion when 55 mere mortals were permitted a glimpse of the eternal verities and then embalmed their insights in the document.” She takes the Jeffersonian view, that the Constitution should be interpreted as a living document meant to serve the needs of an evolving society, not as a mummified relic, too sacred to be touched.