Foreword SNX 2014: Challenges to Justice Education: South-North Perspectives

Charleston Law Review, Vol. 9, p. 213, 2015

U. of Pittsburgh Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2016-12

14 Pages Posted: 9 May 2016

Date Written: April 11, 2016


“Towards an Education for Justice: South North Perspectives” was the theme of the XI LatCrit South North Exchange on Theory, Culture and Law, convened at the Universidad de los Andes in Bogotá, Colombia in 2014. Scholars, students and activists from more than 10 countries encompassing the Global South and Global North engaged in a critical and animated exchange on the changing space of legal studies and how this change can be stirred towards acknowledging the need to integrate a concern for justice as part of legal education. The premise of the Conference was that the dominant model of legal education, that views law as a commodity, has been historically predicated on the “rule of law” as its base line with little emphasis on the relationship between Law and the notions of justice, equality and dignity. The Conference set the stage for a critical and interdisciplinary look at legal education (and higher education as a whole) and how the access and content of education can be improved in ways that would promote justice and anti-subordination practices. Specifically, Participants engaged in a discussion on how to use this juncture in legal education to achieve socially relevant reforms. The conference also welcomed presentations that related to the standing themes of LatCrit: the multidimensionality of Latina/o identity and its relationship to current legal, political and cultural regimes or practices. The idea was to explore aspects of the Latina/o experience in legal discourse, both domestically and internationally. This paper, a foreword for the symposium issue, first provides background on the various crises in legal education today. Then, from a LatCrit perspective, it discusses the critical need for law school curricula to include justice, teaching students about challenging inequities based on race, gender, class, and other identity categories and their intersectional interplay. This foreword also provides a summary of the papers presented at the SNX 2014, providing a sampling of the themes discussed during this vital conference.

Keywords: LatCrit, legal education, law school curriculum, critical race theory, Latina/o identity, social reform, law school reform, pedagogy, cultural regimes, cultural practices, legal theory, discrimination, equity, social justice

JEL Classification: K19, K39, D63

Suggested Citation

Velez Martinez, Sheila I., Foreword SNX 2014: Challenges to Justice Education: South-North Perspectives (April 11, 2016). Charleston Law Review, Vol. 9, p. 213, 2015, U. of Pittsburgh Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2016-12, Available at SSRN:

Sheila I. Velez Martinez (Contact Author)

University of Pittsburgh School of Law ( email )

3900 Forbes Ave.
Pittsburgh, PA 15260
United States

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