The Annual Distinguished Lecture: Anne Alstott


November 17, 2016
12:45 – 2:00pm

Boston University School of Law
765 Commonwealth Ave
Barristers Hall

alstott_anne_ala23The rising tide of inequality has undermined one of the United States’ proudest social achievements: the Social Security retirement system. Unprecedented changes in longevity, marriage, and the workplace have made the experience of old age increasingly unequal. Wealthy, educated Americans live longer, healthier lives, well into their 80s and 90s, with more social and job options than ever before. Poorer, less-educated workers, by contrast, face illness, disability, and limited job opportunities, often by their late 50s and early 60s.

America’s retirement system is badly out of step with the new inequality of old age. Enacted in the 1930s, Social Security built on the social and economic conventions of its time: it aimed to protect families with a male breadwinner, a steady job, and a marriage that lasted a lifetime. In its time, the program promised a dignified old age for rich and poor alike, but today that egalitarian promise is failing. It is past time to begin reshaping Social Security for the way we live now.

About the Speaker
Anne Alstott is the Jacquin D. Bierman Professor in Taxation at Yale Law School. An expert in taxation and social policy, she was named a professor at Yale Law School in 1997 and originally named the Jacquin D. Bierman Professor of Taxation in 2004. She served as deputy dean in 2002 and 2004 and has won the Yale Law Women teaching award three times. From 2008 to 2011, she was the Manley O. Hudson Professor of Law at Harvard Law School. Prior to coming to Yale, she taught at Columbia Law and before that, served as an attorney-advisor in the Treasury Department’s Office of Tax Legislative Counsel. Her books include; No Exit: What Parents Owe Children and What Society Owes Parents (Oxford University Press, 2004) and The Stakeholder Society (with Bruce Ackerman, Yale University Press, 1999). She holds an A.B., summa cum laude, in economics from Georgetown University and a J.D. from Yale Law School.

About the Annual Distinguished Lecture
The Annual Distinguished Lecture was established in 1986 to bring outstanding legal scholars to Boston University School of Law to present lectures on important legal topics. Revised versions of the lectures are published in the Boston University Law Review.

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