Resources for Social Justice Research

For more information on Centers for Social Justice in law school, see Stephanie M. Wildman, Democracy and Social Justice: Founding Centers for Social Justice in Law Schools, 55 J. Legal Educ. 252 (2005). To view a short presentation on the article, see the Democracy and Justice presentation.

For a discussion on how socio-cultural factors reinforce white privilege, see Stephanie M. Wildman, The Persistence of White Privilege, 18 Wash. U. J.L. & Pol’y 245 (2005).

Most discussions of white privilege emphasize the individual benefit to the holder of privilege. Yet dynamics beyond the individual combine to reinforce and reinvent white privilege. Socio-cultural factors operate in conjunction with material forces, enabling whites to self-perpetuate as a dominant racialized identity. This article focuses on four socio-cultural factors that reinforce white privilege: (1) the contemporary cultural push to colorblindness; (2) the sleight of mind that typifies the relation between an individual and groups in American culture; (3) a comfort zone in whiteness, which includes whiteness as the fabric of daily life for whites and white participation in the construction of race from a white-privileged viewpoint; and (4) the tendency for holders of white privilege to take back the center in discourse, turning attention away from potentially uncomfortable conversations about race toward an emphasis on white concerns and issues. The article concludes by considering the relevance of privilege to law, demonstrating how an analysis of privilege would illuminate legal facts patterns and further social justice.

For more information on the theme, the legal profession’s obligation to provide public service and access to justice, see Professor Wildman’s article Instilling Purpose: Courses in Justice Need to Be Part of Every Student’s Legal Education (PDF).

For information on developments in legal education nationally, see the websites for the Association of American Law Schools’ Equal Justice Project and The Society of American Law Teachers (SALT).

For a select bibliography on the influence of Martin Luther King, Jr., see selected resources by Lynette Louis-Jacques and Patricia Sayre McCoy.

For a discussion on the role of Centers for Social Justice in eliminating bias, see John B. Lough, Jr.,
Shedding Light on Biases: The Role of Centers for Social Justice in Eliminating Bias (Feb. 15, 2006) (PDF).

For an introduction to approaching original research, please see Professor Jane Curry’s slide show presentation “Doing a Research Project” (PDF).

Unconscious Bias (PDF). Remarks by Lindbergh Porter, Esq. Mr. Porter delivered these comments to a Social Justice Monday audience on February 5, 2007. He offers observations on contemporary examples of bias and makes suggestions for responses, including self-education.

Lindbergh Porter, a 2006 “Super Lawyer” according to the Law & Politics Publishers and one of the top four employment attorneys in the San Francisco Bay Area according to The Recorder in 2004, takes pride in his ability to become a strategic member of a company’s legal team. He approaches every engagement with a winning plan that aligns with the client’s particular circumstances. Client satisfaction is his goal both as a litigator and counselor, and trial and settlement results are how he measures success. Enjoying an impressive track record, Mr. Porter is an effective advocate for his clients’ interests. Mr. Porter represents financial services, hospitality, healthcare, manufacturing, media, and technology clients as advisor, trial, and wage-and-hour class action counsel. Mr. Porter received his A.B from the University of Illinois and his J.D. from the University of San Francisco Law School.

For a discussion of multicultural education as a form of values or moral education, see Lawrence Blum, Multicultural Education as Values Education (1997) (PDF).

Professor Lawrence Blum’s essay, Multicultural Education as Values Education, discusses multicultural education, with respect to race and ethnicity groups (“ethno-racial” groups), as a form of values or moral education. His essay addresses not only the subject matter of multicultural education (curriculum), but also acknowledges that values apply to four distinct entities in the education process: individual, teacher, school, and society. In particular, his essay focuses on four individual values that relate to multicultural education: antiracism, cultural respect, commitment to cultural pluralism, and inter-ethnic or inter-racial unity or community. In addition, Professor Blum discusses and distinguishes a fifth, teacher-centered and school-centered, value called culturally sensitive teaching.

Professor Lawrence Blum is Professor of Philosophy and Distinguished Professor of Liberal Arts and Education at the University of Massachusetts at Boston. His fields are ethics and moral philosophy, multicultural education, race studies, and social and political philosophy. He received his PhD from Harvard University.

For Santa Clara Law Professor Bob Peterson’s overview of provision of legal services issues in the U.S., Legal Aid in the United States (2009) (PDF).