Sessions Information

  • January 5, 2012
    10:30 am - 12:15 pm
    Session Type: AALS Hot Topic Programs
    Session Capacity: N/A

    Beginning in mid-September 2011, the Occupy Wall Street movement grew quickly in size and scale, spreading to every corner of the country.  This panel explores the meaning of Occupy Wall Street and other mass protest movements.  Adrien Wing considers the mass demonstrations that have shaken regimes in North Africa and the Middle East since early 2011.  Across the region and around the world, including the United States, a generation of young men and women find themselves without decent jobs or economic opportunities. By occupying public space, they have demanded attention and raised troubling questions about systematic inequalities in our law, politics, and economy.  Gerald Torres considers the Occupy movement as a failure of democracy as elite politics, raising questions about the substantive prerequisites of democracy.  Erwin Chemerinsky analyzes the First Amendment speech and assembly issues raised by Occupy Wall Street as governments at all levels and corporate media conglomerates seek to contain and marginalize the movement.   john powell explores the legacies of race and class, the contested meaning of political community, and the rise of corporate constitutional personhood.  Todd Henderson argues that some of the Occupy critique is based on false assumptions and where well grounded, offers the wrong set of solutions.  Tim Canova considers the Occupy agenda and its critique of financial institutions and policies as excluding and harming the bottom 99 percent.  The panel will discuss how Occupy Wall Street and other mass movements challenge us to rethink our own work and what such movements say about our legal regimes, public and private institutions, and political freedoms and civic obligations.


Date & Time
Timothy A. Canova, Chapman University Dale E. Fowler School of Law

Erwin Chemerinsky, University of California, Irvine School of Law

M. Todd Henderson, The University of Chicago, The Law School

john powell, University of California, Berkeley School of Law

Gerald Torres, The University of Texas School of Law

Adrien Katherine K Wing, Chapman University Dale E. Fowler School of Law

Session Fees
  • Hot Topic Program: Occupy Wall Street as a Transformative Social Movement: Its Meaning and Prospects for the Future: $0.00
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