Promises and Challenges of Achieving Racial Equality in Legal Education in Canada

Canadian Legal Education Annual Review, 2010

Posted: 22 Sep 2011 Last revised: 6 Oct 2011

See all articles by Elizabeth Adjin-Tettey

Elizabeth Adjin-Tettey

University of Victoria - Faculty of Law

Maneesha Deckha

University of Victoria - Faculty of Law

Date Written: 2010

Abstract

This paper considers the challenges law school actors (students, faculty, administrators) face in countering the hegemonic whiteness of Canadian law schools. In examining both admissions policies as well as current dominant law school cultures, the authors reveal how Canadian law schools can act as sites of institutional racism and provide suggestions on how to meaningfully diversify law schools in order to create a more egalitarian society. Part I of the paper focuses on admissions policies. The authors discuss the need for affirmative action and analyze different options for implementing racial balance in the admissions process. The paper also provides insights relating to the need for outreach and recruitment of racialized students as well as considers the way the racialization of poverty may impact attempts to achieve racial equality in legal education. Part II of the paper focuses on the cultural norms that permeate law schools and the difficulties they pose to racialized students and faculty. Specific problematic practices relating to academic support, curriculum content, classroom dynamics, pedagogy, evaluation and administration are identified and concrete steps that law schools can adopt in these areas to achieve greater racial balance are offered. The paper ends by highlighting the importance of racial equality in legal education to the broader goal of achieving a socially just society.

Keywords: Law Scools Admission, Affirmative Action, Curricula

Suggested Citation

Adjin-Tettey, Elizabeth and Deckha, Maneesha, Promises and Challenges of Achieving Racial Equality in Legal Education in Canada (2010). Canadian Legal Education Annual Review, 2010, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1931143

Elizabeth Adjin-Tettey (Contact Author)

University of Victoria - Faculty of Law ( email )

P.O. Box 1700, STN CSC
Victoria, B.C. V8W 2Y2
Canada
250.721.8182 (Phone)
250.721.8146 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://law.uvic.ca/faculty_staff/faculty_directory/adjintettey.php

Maneesha Deckha

University of Victoria - Faculty of Law ( email )

PO Box 1700 STN CSC
Victoria, British Columbia V8W 2Y2
Canada
250-721-8175 (Phone)
250-721-8146 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://https://www.uvic.ca/law/facultystaff/facultydirectory/deckha.php

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