Join us for a discussion featuring William Nelson Cromwell Professor of Law at Yale Law School Stephen Carter in conversation with Frederick I. and Grace Stokes Professor of Law at NYU School of Law Melissa Murray. Carter and Murray, two notable legal scholars, will discuss the role of government power in uniting a nation or tearing it apart in times of crisis and will explore the legal implications of the invocation of emergency powers during this particularly tempestuous moment in our nation’s history.
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Stephen L. Carter is the William Nelson Cromwell Professor of Law at Yale Law School, where he has been a member of the faculty since 1982. Among his recent courses are Contracts, Evidence, Law and Religion, the Ethics of War, Slavery and the Law, and Libertarian Legal Theory. He is the author of fifteen books, including, among others, The Violence of Peace: America’s Wars in the Age of Obama (2010); God’s Name in Vain: The Wrongs and Rights of Religion in Politics (2000); Civility: Manners, Morals, and the Etiquette of Democracy (1998); The Dissent of the Governed: A Meditation on Law, Religion, and Loyalty (1998); The Confirmation Mess: Cleaning up the Federal Appointments Process (1994); and The Culture of Disbelief: How American Law and Politics Trivialize Religious Devotion (1993). His most recent volume, published in 2018, is Invisible: The Forgotten Story of the Black Woman Lawyer who Took Down America’s Biggest Mobster. He recently delivered the W. E. B. Du Bois Lectures at Harvard, which he is writing up for publication.
Professor Carter is also the author of six novels, including The Emperor of Ocean Park, which spent eleven weeks on the New York Times bestseller list, and The Impeachment of Abraham Lincoln, a fictional account of a trial of Lincoln in the Senate for high crimes and misdemeanors. In addition to his scholarship, he has published hundreds of opinion pieces. He was a long-time columnist for the Daily Beast and currently writes regularly for Bloomberg, mainly about law, but also about ethics and about popular culture. In addition, he formerly blogged about professional football for the Washington Post.
Professor Carter is a graduate of Stanford University and Yale Law School. He served as a law clerk for Justice Thurgood Marshall at the United States Supreme Court, and earlier for Judge Spottswood W. Robinson, III, of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. He was the interviewer for Justice Marshall’s official oral history. Among the prizes Professor Carter’s work has received are the Louisville-Grawemeyer Award in Religion, the Anisfield-Wolf Award for Fiction, and the Paul M. Bator Award. He has also served on the Pulitzer Prize fiction jury. Professor Carter is a fellow of several learned societies and a life member of the American Law Institute. He is a trustee of the Aspen Institute, where for fifteen years he moderated seminars. He has received eight honorary degrees.
Melissa Murray is the Frederick I. and Grace Stokes Professor of Law at NYU School of Law, where she teaches constitutional law, family law, criminal law, and reproductive rights and justice. Murray’s research interests focus on the legal regulation of sex and sexuality. Her writing has appeared in a range of legal and lay publications, including the Harvard Law Review, the Yale Law Journal, the New York Times, the Washington Post, and the Nation. Prior to joining the NYU Law faculty, Murray was the Alexander F. and May T. Morrison Professor of Law at the University of California, Berkeley, where she received the law school’s Rutter Award for Teaching Distinction, the Association of American Law School’s Derrick A. Bell Award, and, from March 2016 to June 2017, served as interim dean of the law school. Murray serves a legal contributor for ABC News and is a co-host of Strict Scrutiny, a podcast about the Supreme Court and the legal culture that surrounds it.
Murray is a graduate of the University of Virginia, where she was a Jefferson Scholar and an Echols Scholar, and Yale Law School, where she was notes development editor of the Yale Law Journal. Following law school, Murray clerked for Sonia Sotomayor, then a judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, and Stefan Underhill of the U.S. District Court for the District of Connecticut. She is a member of the American Law Institute and the New York bar.