Call-for-Papers: “The Constitution in an Era of Increasing Inequality” – AALS

AALS Sections on Constitutional Law and Poverty Law
Call for Papers – 2017 AALS Annual Meeting

The AALS Sections on Constitutional Law and Poverty Law invite paper submissions for their joint panel on “The Constitution in an Era of Increasing Inequality,” which has been scheduled for Friday, January 6 from 10:30 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. during the AALS Annual Meeting on January 3-7, 2017 in San Francisco.


Income and wealth inequality between America’s upper-income families and its middle- and lower-income families are greater than they have been for decades. Because the Supreme Court has never recognized poor people as a suspect class, they do not receive special protection under the Constitution, yet their experiences in myriad areas—including education, housing, reproductive justice, and interactions with the civil and criminal justice systems—are fundamentally different from the experiences of those of even modest financial means.

Against this backdrop, the Sections on Constitutional Law and Poverty Law join to address the ways in which the Constitution might be brought to bear on these discrepancies through its treatment of laws, regulations, policies, and practices that disproportionately impact people who live in poverty. Panelists will explore the legal strategies that have been successful, revisit questions about the poor constituting a suspect or quasi-suspect class, and discuss how we might utilize constitutional law doctrine to address the causes and consequences of poverty.


Full-time faculty members of AALS member law schools are eligible to submit papers. Faculty who are clinicians, pre-tenure, and/or of diverse backgrounds are especially encouraged to submit papers. N.B. All faculty presenters are responsible for paying their own annual meeting registration fee and hotel and travel expenses.


One paper will be selected by a committee appointed by the Section of Constitutional Law Chair Lauren Sudeall Lucas, and Section of Poverty Law Chair Elect Marc-Tizoc González. While there are no requirements as to the form or length of proposals, substantial manuscript drafts will receive priority over mere abstracts, and the person selected to join the panel shall share her or his manuscript draft with the other panelists and moderator by December 1, 2016.


Please submit your paper by email, under the heading “Submission – 2017 AALS – The Constitution in an Era of Increasing Inequality,” and direct any inquiries, to and, on or before August 15, 2016. The author of the selected paper will be notified by September 15, 2016.


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