The Volokh Conspiracy

Mostly law professors | Sometimes contrarian | Often libertarian | Always independent

Justice George Sutherland and Women's Rights; Intro to Classified

Two new postings of my work on SSRN


For those who want to try before they buy, I've posted the Introduction to Classified: The Untold Story of Racial Classification in America at SSRN. Here are the final few sentences of the Intro:

This book explores that status quo and how we came to our current equilibrium. The book addresses the classifications' history, definitions, boundaries, enforcement, and application. Readers should consider whether and to what extent the results are sensible, and to what extent the United States should abolish its official racial classifications and move toward a separation of race and state.

I've also posted Revisiting Justice George Sutherland, the Nineteenth Amendment, and Equal Rights for Women. Here is the abstract:

Justice George Sutherland was a strong supporter of women's rights. Among other things, as a Senator from Utah he was Congress' leading supporter of the Nineteenth Amendment. But Sutherland's record on women's rights has long been obscured by his undeserved reputation as a reactionary. Part I of this Article discusses Sutherland's argument in Adkins v. Children's Hospital that, in light of passage of the Nineteenth Amendment, women were entitled to the same level of liberty of contract as men, including the liberty to bargain for wages. Part II of this Article reviews the dismissive attitude historians have taken towards Sutherland's egalitarian reasoning and rhetoric in Adkins. As discussed in Part II, this dismissiveness neglects Sutherland's pre-judicial record of support for women's rights. Part III of this Article reviews several speeches Sutherland gave in support of the Nineteenth Amendment, with the purpose of trying to better understand his support for women's rights. Among other contributions made by this Article, it is the first to note that Justice Sutherland's wife, Rosamond Lee Sutherland, was a strong public supporter of women's suffrage. Mrs. Sutherland may have influenced her husband's perspective regarding women's rights.