Yale Bulletin and Calendar

May 24, 2002Volume 30, Number 30Two-Week Issue

Robert W. Gordon

Robert Gordon appointed the Kent Professor

Robert W. Gordon, the newly appointed Chancellor Kent Professor of Law and Legal History, is an expert in the field of American legal history and the history of the American legal profession.

His other teaching and research specialties include administrative law, contracts, legislation, professional responsibility, English legal history, the uses of the history of legal argument, the legal regulation of expression in the United States and United Kingdom, free speech and the First Amendment, lawyers and social movements, the legal history of American corporations and professionalism under pressure in law and medicine.

Gordon is editor of the 1992 book "The Legacy of Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr." and author of "Storie Critiche del Diritto," published in Italian in 1995. He has also written dozens of articles and essays and has contributed chapters to several books on the law. He has several works in progress, including the book "Lawyers of the Republic," as well as a history of law as a public profession, a book on the uses of history in legal argument and a book on the ideology and practices of the New York City corporate bar from 1880 to 1920. Gordon is also writing a brief history of the American legal profession in the 20th century and is conducting research on lawyers' roles in contract negotiation and drafting in the Silicon Valley.

After studying at Harvard University, the ,legal scholar began his career as a reporter, working first for the Louisville Courier-Journal and, after a stint in the U.S. Army, for Newsweek's Boston and Rio de Janeiro bureaus. He returned to Harvard to complete his B.A. degree and went on to the Harvard Law School, where he earned a J.D. degree. After serving on the staff of the Massachusetts attorney general's office, Gordon began a career in teaching. Before coming to Yale in 1995, he held faculty appointments at the State University of New York at Buffalo, the University of Wisconsin Law School and at the Stanford Law School. He was named the Fred A. Johnston Professor of Law and Professor of History at Yale in 1996. He served for one semester as acting director of the Whitney Humanities Center.

Gordon has been a visiting professor at Harvard, Stanford, Oxford and the University of Toronto, and he has delivered named lectures at law schools through the country. He is currently president of the American Society for Legal History.


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Commencement Information

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