Gender and the Tournament: Reinventing Antidiscrimination Law in an Age of Inequality

59 Pages Posted: 7 Mar 2017 Last revised: 10 Mar 2018

See all articles by Nancy Levit

Nancy Levit

University of Missouri at Kansas City - School of Law

June Carbone

University of Minnesota - Twin Cities - School of Law

Naomi Cahn

George Washington University - Law School

Date Written: March 6, 2017

Abstract

Since the 1970’s, antidiscrimination advocates have approached Title VII as though the impact of the law on minorities and women could be considered in isolation. This article argues that this is a mistake. Instead, Reinventing Antidiscrimination Law attempts to reclaim Title VII’s original approach, which justified efforts to dismantle segregated workplaces as necessary to both eliminate discrimination and promote economic growth. Using that approach, this Article is the first to consider how widespread corporate tournaments and growing gender disparities in the upper echelons of the economy are intrinsically intertwined, and how they undermine the core promises of antidiscrimination law. The Article draws on a pending case challenging the “rank and yank” evaluation system at Microsoft, as well as social science literature regarding narcissism and stereotype expectations, to illustrate how consideration of the legitimacy of competitive pay for performance schemes is essential to combating the intrinsically gendered nature of advancement in the new economy.

Keywords: Discrimination, antidiscrimination, Title VII, segregation, workplace, gender, minorities, women, disparities, inequities, globalization, employment, competition, stereotypes, Microsoft

JEL Classification: J15; J16; J21; J31; J33; J38; J71; K13; K31; K41

Suggested Citation

Levit, Nancy and Carbone, June and Cahn, Naomi R., Gender and the Tournament: Reinventing Antidiscrimination Law in an Age of Inequality (March 6, 2017). Naomi Cahn, June Carbone & Nancy Levit, Gender and the Tournament: Reinventing Antidiscrimination Law in the Age of Inequality, 96 Tex. L. Rev. 425 (2018).; Minnesota Legal Studies Research Paper No. 17-09; GWU Law School Public Law Research Paper No. 2017-13; GWU Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2017-13. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2928352

Nancy Levit (Contact Author)

University of Missouri at Kansas City - School of Law ( email )

5100 Rockhill Road
Kansas City, MO 64110-2499
United States

June Carbone

University of Minnesota - Twin Cities - School of Law ( email )

229-19th Avenue South
Minneapolis, MN 55455
United States

Naomi R. Cahn

George Washington University - Law School ( email )

2000 H Street, N.W.
Washington, DC 20052
United States
202-994-6025 (Phone)
202-994-5614 (Fax)

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