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Stanford scholar to discuss ‘The Gay and the Angry’

March  19, 2012

Pamela S. Karlan, Augustana’s Phi Beta Kappa Visiting Scholar for 2012, will speak on same-sex marriage and the Supreme Court in a lecture on Monday, March 26, at 7:30 p.m. in the Robert and Patricia Hanson Hall of Science (726 35th St.).

This lecture is free and open to the public. In her lecture, titled “The Gay and the Angry: The Supreme Court, Gay Rights and the Cultural Rearguard,” Karlan will discuss the Supreme Court and its past, sharply divided decisions concerning gay rights, and their connection to technological and social change and First Amendment values. In addition to her lecture, Karlan will visit classes and discuss this and other issues with the students of Augustana.

“The gay marriage battle has been called the greatest civil rights battle of the early 21st century, and it may well end up being decided by nine individuals,” said Sarah Horowitz, Special Collections librarian and secretary of Augustana’s Phi Beta Kappa Chapter. “Karlan will be discussing a topic on which many are passionate, and which shapes national political conversations. It is good to see that Augustana is participating in these conversations.”

Karlan is the Kenneth and Harle Montgomery Professor of Public Interest Law at Stanford University and co-director of Stanford’s Supreme Court Litigation Clinic. Her primary scholarly interests lie in the areas of constitutional law and constitutional litigation, with an emphasis on voting rights and anti-discrimination law. She has published dozens of articles as well as three casebooks and a monograph, Keeping Faith with the Constitution. In her clinical work, she supervises law students on cases before the Supreme Court and has argued seven cases before the Supreme Court herself.

A former law clerk to District Judge Abraham D. Sofaer and Supreme Court Justice Harry A. Blackmun, Karlan has served as assistant counsel and remains a cooperating attorney for the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund. She is a member of the American Law Institute, a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and of the American Academy of Appellate Lawyers, and the recipient of three awards for excellence in teaching.

The Phi Beta Kappa Visiting Scholar Program makes available each year a dozen or so distinguished scholars who will visit colleges and universities with chapters of Phi Beta Kappa. The purpose of the program is to contribute to the intellectual life of the institution by making possible an exchange of ideas between the visiting scholar and the resident faculty and students. Now entering its 56th year, the Visiting Scholar Program has sent 586 scholars on 4,845 two-day visits since it was established.

Sam Schlouch
Director, Public Relations and Arts Promotion
(309) 794-7833
samschlouch@augustana.edu