Mark Tushnet – Social Movements and the U.S. Constitution

14 January 2016
Performance Hall, Yale-NUS College

Mark Tushnet, William Nelson Cromwell Professor of Law at Harvard Law School, will address “Social Movements and the U.S. Constitution”. He will examine how social movements have affected the development and interpretation of the U.S. Constitution. After providing an overview of social movements and their relationship with interest groups and political parties, Professor Tushnet will turn to three mechanisms of influence: direct effects, effects through the political parties, and effects through cultural change. The lecture will conclude by examining social movements’ use of litigation campaigns, with a focus on the “top down” and “bottom up” analysis of the civil rights movement’s use of litigation.


Professor Tushnet is the co-author of four casebooks, including the most widely used casebook on constitutional law in the US, and has written numerous books, including a two-volume work on the life of Justice Thurgood Marshall and, most recently, Advanced Introduction to Comparative Constitutional Law, In the Balance: The Roberts Court and the Future of Constitutional Law, Why the Constitution Matters, and Weak Courts, Strong Rights: Judicial Review and Social Welfare Rights in Comparative Perspective. He was President of the Association of American Law Schools in 2003. In 2002 he was elected a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

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