Columbia University New York, N.Y. 10027 Office of Public Information (212) 854-5573
Kimberle W. Crenshaw, a specialist on race, gender and the law, has joined the faculty of the Columbia University School of Law as full professor.
The appointment was announced by Dean Lance Liebman, who said: "Kimberle Crenshaw is one of the leading law scholars of her generation. Her invention of the concept of 'intersectionalities' has shed important light on central issues of civil rights law. She is a fine teacher whose work is discussed and respected throughout American law schools and abroad."
Professor Crenshaw, 36, is the founding coordinator of the Critical Race Theory Workshop and has been a principal contributor to that literature. This evolving field encompasses a wide range of scholarship about race and law, broadly linked by a common focus on the central role of law in both producing and contesting racial power in American society. Her concept of "intersectionality" denotes the various ways that race and gender interact in shaping employment experiences of women of color.
She has taught at the University of California at Los Angeles since 1986, where she was named Professor of the Year in 1991 and again in 1994. She was Samuel Rubin Visiting Professor at Columbia during the 1995 spring semester and in 1992. She has taught courses on criminal law, civil and voting rights, constitutional law and equal protection, and legal issues arising from race and gender.
She is a co-author of "Words That Wound: Critical Race Theory, Assaultive Speech and the First Amendment" (1993) and co-editor with Columbia Law Professor Kendall Thomas of "Critical Race Theory: Key Documents that Shaped the Movement," to be published this year by New Press.
Professor Crenshaw has lectured throughout the United States and Europe and written extensively on civil rights, black feminist legal theory, and race, racism and the law. She facilitated a workshop on equality and constitutional interpretation for the Justices of the South American Constitutional Court, and gave the keynote address at a national conference on gender, justice and the law in Brazil.
In 1991 she assisted the legal team that represented Anita Hill in her accusations of sexual harassment against Clarence Thomas at the U.S. Senate confirmation hearings for his Supreme Court nomination. She is a member of the Domestic Strategy Group at the Aspen Institute, co-chaired by Senator Bill Bradley and former Representative Vin Weber and is a member of the National Research Council panel on Research on Violence Against Women.
In recognition of her work on behalf of African American women, she received the Lucy Terry Prince Award from the Lawyer's Committee for Civil Rights Under Law.
A 1981 graduate of Cornell University, she earned the J.D. degree at Harvard Law School in 1984 and the LL.M. at the University of Wisconsin in 1985. She served as a law clerk to Judge Shirley S. Abrahamson of the Wisconsin Supreme Court in 1985-86.