Boston University School of Law

November 16, 2007

BU Law Appoints Professors Lahav, Leonard, Seipp and Silbaugh Law Alumni Scholars

BU Law announces the appointment of four new Law Alumni Scholars: Professors Pnina Lahav, Gerald Leonard, David Seipp and Katherine Silbaugh. These appointments, which support faculty research and scholarship, are made possible through alumni donations to the faculty scholar fund. Below are brief synopses of their research.


Professor Pnina Lahav

During the course of her legal career, Professor Pnina Lahav has published nearly 50 journal articles and three books, including the critically acclaimed Judgment in Jerusalem: Chief Justice Simon Agranat and the Zionist Century, which was the subject of a symposium at the Tel Aviv University Faculty of Law in 1999.

Her research interests encompass constitutional law, First Amendment jurisprudence, comparative law, political trials and judicial biography. She has earned a fellowship from the Rockefeller Foundation, a year-long fellowship at the Stanford Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences and a grant from the Lipsitt Faculty Research Fund at Boston University. Recently Professor Lahav was invited to serve as a fellow at the Center for Advanced Studies at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem in the spring of 2008. She has taught at Hebrew University, Tel Aviv University, The Center for Interdisciplinary Studies in Herzlia, Oxford University and Université Jean Moulin Lyon 3 in Lyon, France.

She presently is working on two book projects, The Chicago Conspiracy Trial and Sisters: The American-Israeli Dialogue on the Meaning of Feminism. She recently completed an article on the jurisprudence of Israel's supreme court since 1995, and is working on an article "Seeking recognition: women's struggle to full citizenship in the community of religious worship."


Professor Gerald Leonard

Professor Gerald Leonard, who serves as associate dean for academic affairs, received a Ph.D. in History from the University of Michigan, where he submitted his dissertation, "Partisan Political Theory and the Unwritten Constitution: The Origins of Democracy in Illinois, 1818-1840."

After receiving his J.D. degree from Michigan Law School, he served as a law clerk for Justice David H. Souter of the U.S. Supreme Court. Professor Leonard published the book, The Invention of Party Politics: Federalism, Popular Sovereignty, and Constitutional Development in Jacksonian Illinois, with the University of North Carolina Press's prestigious Studies in Legal History series. He has also written articles on such topics as Oliver Wendell Holmes (on crime, and on the Lochner Court), and the legal history of American criminal law theory.

In addition to American legal history, his research interests include criminal law and sentencing. He is currently writing an invited review essay for Law and Social Inquiry, addressing two recent books about the Dred Scott case and the general question of whether and how to distinguish between law and politics in constitutional historiography.


Professor David Seipp

Professor David Seipp, noted legal historian and property law teacher, often looks across the Atlantic for inspiration in his legal research. Among his scholarly interests are the roles of judges, lawyers and jurors in the development of medieval English common law, the persistence and evolution of basic legal concepts throughout the centuries, and the jurisprudential eccentricities of Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. His many journal articles and papers have appeared in publications throughout the world including Law and History Review, Oxford Journal of Legal Studies and proceedings of the British Legal History Conference, and he contributed to the 60-volume Oxford Dictionary of National Biography.

His current research involves the prodigious task of completing a comprehensive index and paraphrase of printed Year Book reports (English law reports from 1268 to 1535, printed in French, most of which have not been reprinted since 1680). His records of Year Book cases, which currently number 22,166, are mounted on a searchable Web site and have been linked to images of the printed Year Book texts to which they refer. His Web site also lists every early printed edition of Year Books and every known manuscript.


Professor Katharine Silbaugh

Widely recognized for her pioneering work on the legal response to women's domestic labor, Professor Katharine Silbaugh is a leader in the emerging legal literature on the stresses of the work-family conflict. Her research highlights the economic and social value of work done within households, and the inadequacy of the legal response to that labor.

She clerked for Judge Richard Posner of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit and later collaborated with Posner on a book surveying sexual regulation, A Guide to America's Sex Laws, published by the University of Chicago Press. Professor Silbaugh is the author of numerous journal articles including "Commodification and Women's Household Labor" for Yale Journal of Law and Feminism and "Turning Labor into Love: Housework and the Law" for Northwestern Law Review. Currently she is revising the article, "Women's Place: Urban Planning, Housing Design, and Work-Family Balance," forthcoming 75 Fordham L. Rev. xx (2007). Another forthcoming article is "WalMart's other Woman Problem: Sprawl and Work-Family Balance," forthcoming 39 Conn. L. Rev. 1715 (2007). She has also begun work on a book, The Essentials of Family Law, with Katharine Baker, to be published by Aspen in 2009.