Call for Papers: Redressing Legacies of Injustice from Slavery, Empire, and Beyond: Reparations and Restorative Justice



Event Date: 

01/26/22 to 04/13/22

Location name: 



Touro Law Center’s Journal of Race, Gender, and Ethnicity

Four Symposium Panels over Four Days:

January 26, 2022 / February 16, 2022 / March 23, 2022 / April 13, 2022


Just societies work towards redressing historic injustice. History matters. Law, institutions, and social practices of the past have substantial effects on the opportunities of people today and on generations in the future. Slavery, Jim Crow, a history of broken treaties, the destruction of culture and the dispossession of peoples from their lands have produced inter-generational harm. A collective moral responsibility mandates the recognition of these harms and action to deal with them. Because historic injustice has a great deal to do with institutions, the work of lawyers and legal scholars in addressing historic injustice is key. But lawyers are accustomed to conceptualizing binary forms of legal responsibility, in which justice is something done to rectify a wrong caused by an identifiable wrongdoer and to a specific person harmed by that wrongdoer. Remedies for historic injustice require that we shift our focus from traditional forms of legal responsibility to broader forms of social responsibility. Add to the mix that historic injustice is not something that occurred only within the borders of currently configured nation-states but implicates a coercive period of globalization featuring at its core the violent re-configuration of communities and economies through conquest, the transatlantic slave trade, and the destruction of indigenous cultures and communities.

This call for papers seeks submissions that address how to remedy historic injustice, with a broad, though not necessarily exclusive, focus on the United States. We have a strong interest in papers that are focused on the institutional design of reparations programs relevant to African American and Native American communities, though we welcome papers that would be relevant to other communities, as well, including remedial innovations considered in other countries that might inform the conversation in the United States. Therefore, we welcome papers that address reparations and similar programs at three spatial levels: international, national, and local.

Abstracts should be no longer than 500 words in length and will be due by September 24, 2021. Selected applicants will deliver their presentations at an online symposium sponsored by the Journal of Race, Gender, and Ethnicity at Touro Law Center during the spring of 2022. The symposium will be non-traditional in the sense that it will not take place during a single day. Instead, there will be four symposium panels, each one of which will occur over the course of four specific days: January 26, 2022; February 16, 2022; March 23, 2022; and April 13, 2022. The first panel will take place from 5:00-8:00 pm (EST), while the remaining panels will take place from 5:00-7:00 pm (EST) on each scheduled day.

Academics in all disciplines, practitioners, policymakers, and other potentially interested stakeholders are invited to apply. Abstracts should be submitted by clicking the button below.  Authors whose proposals are accepted will receive an invitation to publish with the Journal. If the invitation is accepted, completed papers should be submitted to the Journal by March 14, 2022. Papers should be approximately 3500-7500 words in length. Questions should be directed to Raj Telwala, the Symposium Editor of the Journal.