Lenora Ledwon


Not one of my casebooks in law school was edited by a woman. I didn't give that much thought at the time, viewing it as another "given" of the intimidating and masculine world of law school. Other givens included the fact that twothirds of the class were male and that women professors were scarce. (In three years I only had one female professor, who lectured to us on legal writing strategies as part of a pass/fail course.) But I still have my casebooks from law school, packed in an old cardboard box in the garage. I couldn't part with them during law school, even though classmates had advised me to resell them quickly before they became outdated. I remember my first year casebooks, particularly. It was no easy task to lug them several blocks from the bookstore to the dorm, in a time before those ubiquitous little wheeled carts had gained popularity. I remember spreading them out on my desk. They were solid and thick, with dark covers embossed with gold lettering. They looked heavy with learning. Here was the Law. And if it had occurred to me to wonder why not one of the casebooks was edited by a woman, I probably reasoned that the gender of the editors couldn't matter. The law was the law, and surely casebook editors were neutral in their selection and presentation of material.

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