Legal Historian Dinner to Join Law Faculty

Legal historian Deborah Dinner has accepted a position as associate professor of law, effective July 1, 2011. A graduate of Yale Law School and a Ph.D. candidate in history at Yale University, Dinner served as Harvard University’s Raoul Berger–Mark DeWolfe Howe Legal History Fellow in 2009–10. She previously was a Samuel I. Golieb Fellow at New York University School of Law and clerked for Judge Karen Nelson Moore, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit.

“Deborah will be an extraordinary addition to our faculty,” says Kent Syverud, dean and the Ethan A.H. Shepley University Professor. “She is a brilliant lawyer and historian who combines the best of both disciplines in research and teaching.”

“Deborah is an extraordinarily promising scholar of the history of gender, work, and family,” adds Neil Richards, professor of law and chair of this year’s Faculty Appointments Committee. “Deborah will add to our existing strengths in these fields, and allow the law school to deepen its course offerings in legal history and constitutional law.”

Dinner’s scholarship includes recent and forthcoming articles on the history of feminism and employment opportunity in the Harvard Civil Rights and Civil Liberties Law Review, on sex equality and reproductive liberty in the Yale Journal of Law & Feminism, and on child care and social policy in the Law & History Review. Her primary teaching interests include American Legal History, Employment Discrimination, Family Law, Property, and Constitutional Law.

Dinner received her bachelor’s degree in women’s studies and history in 1999 from Yale College and her J.D. in 2005 from Yale Law School, where she was a Coker Teaching Fellow and a Legal History Fellow. She then earned her M.Phil. in history in 2007 from Yale, where she is currently a Ph.D. candidate. Her dissertation topic is “The Law of Work and Family: Feminism and the Transformation of the American Workplace at Century’s End.” At Yale, she also served as articles editor of the Yale Journal of Law & the Humanities.

Dinner is a member of the American Society for Legal History, Law and Society Association, and American Historical Association.