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What Frank Allen Teaches, 85 MICHIGAN L. REV. 391 (1986)


Frank Allen was dean of the University of Michigan Law School when a junior appointment was offered to me. As dean he spoke for the school; but Frank symbolized more than that for me, something to which I aspired as a legal scholar. I could not clearly identify this at the time, but I knew nonetheless in 1970 when I joined the Michigan faculty that Frank's presence and his example there were compelling attractions for me. Two years later I was fortunate enough to enter into an intensive collaboration with Frank that showed me more clearly what I had glimpsed before. The occasion for this collaboration was a request from Judge Hor- ace Gilmore, then on the Wayne County Circuit Court, that Frank serve as counsel to a man who had purportedly volunteered for experi- mental psychosurgery after eighteen years' confinement in the state maximum security mental institution. A taxpayer's suit brought before Judge Gilmore had challenged the propriety of this apparent consent and of the experiment generally; Gilmore preliminarily de- cided that the man, known then only as John Doe, needed indepen- dent counsel and turned to Frank. I was lucky that Frank was both too busy to accept on his own and too intrigued (and responsible) to decline. Frank asked if I would accept

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