Through the Gale Ep1: Civil Rights Lawyering in the Age of Abolition


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Traditionally, civil rights lawyers have focused on establishing anti-discrimination rights in courts. But today, the Movement for Black Lives, abolitionist, and other social movements de-center courts and instead emphasize the need to to build power to advance transformative social change. Can these approaches to social change be reconciled?

Through conversation with Ashok Chandran '15 (NAACP LDF), Theodore Shaw '79 (UNC Center for Civil Rights), and Alexis J. Hoag-Fordjour (Brooklyn Law School), co-hosts Olatunde Johnson and Andres Estevez '23 delve into the history of civil rights lawyering, and examine how it is responding to current social movements.

Episode Details

Released: August 8, 2022

Length: 55:41


Photo of Theodore M. Shaw

Theodore M. Shaw '79, Julius L. Chambers Distinguished Professor of Law and Director of the Center for Civil Rights at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill.

Photo of Ashok Chandran

Ashok Chandran '15, Assistant Counsel for the NAACP Legal Defense Fund.

Photo of Alexis J. Hoag-Fordjour

Alexis J. Hoag-Fordjour, Assistant Professor of Law and Co-Director of the Center for Criminal Justice at Brooklyn Law School.

Hosted By:

Photo of Olatunde C.A. Johnson

Olatunde Johnson, Jerome B. Sherman Professor of Law, teaches and writes about inequality, civil rights, courts, American democracy, and strategies for social change.

Photo of Andres Estevez

Andres Estevez '23 is a rising 3L at Columbia Law School and is interested in race, civil rights, and criminal and social justice.


Written and produced by Andres Estevez and Olatunde Johnson.
Edited and recorded by Devan Kortan and Jake Rosati.
Special thanks to Michelle Wilson, Julie Godsoe, Cary Midland, and Kara Van Woerden.

Sound Clips:

"Ella’s Song," composed by Bernice Johnson Reagon, Sung by Sweet Honey in the Rock.
Instrumentals courtesy of Free Music Archive.


Civil Rights and Discrimination | Law | Law and Race | Legal Profession


Center for Constitutional Governance

Through the Gale Ep1: Civil Rights Lawyering in the Age of Abolition