March 30 Announcement

March 20, 2012

Announcement: New Center on Reproductive Rights and Justice to promote innovative
curriculum and research that yields impactful scholarship and policy advancement.

The University of California, Berkeley, School of Law’s new Center on Reproductive Rights and
Justice (CRRJ) will advance scholarly discourse, bolster law and policy advocacy efforts, and
influence public opinion through innovative socio‐legal research, scholarship, teaching, and
conferences. Advocates and academics from various disciplines will explore meta‐questions that
have long plagued efforts to secure reproductive rights for, and eliminate reproductive
oppression of, marginalized and vulnerable groups.

CRRJ is the creation of Kristin Luker, Elizabeth Josselyn Boalt Professor of Law and Professor of
Sociology, who has taught a seminar on reproductive rights doctrine and discourse since 2005
and authored various works, including When Sex Goes to School (2006), Abortion and the
Politics of Motherhood (which received the Cooley Award and was nominated for a Pulitzer
Prize) and Taking Chances: Abortion and the Decision Not to Contracept. Her book Dubious
Conceptions published in 1995, was selected as New York Times Notable Book of the Year. As
Luker says, “Reproductive justice—and this center—speak to issues I have been worrying about
and studying for almost forty years. It puts justice rather than rights back at the center of
research and advocacy.”

CRRJ is dedicated to the pursuit of reproductive justice, maintaining that all people deserve the
social, financial, political, and legal conditions required to make genuine choices about
reproduction – choices that must be respected, supported, and treated with dignity. Luker is
particularly concerned about advancing the position of marginalized populations whose
reproduction has been forced, denied, or exploited. She believes the rights to have children, to
not have children, and to parent children are of an intimate, fundamental nature and ought to
be accessible to all. Jill E. Adams, former student of Luker’ and Executive Director of Law
Students for Reproductive Justice says, “The same process of inquiry, employed for decades,
will not yield the insights or provide the solutions we need to realize rights and actualize justice.
We must pose questions and investigate their answers in a completely new way. This fresh
approach is the purpose and the promise of the Center on Reproductive Rights and Justice.”

Much of CRRJ’s programming is already underway, including an annual seminar for law and
other graduate students called “The Future of Reproductive Rights: Doctrine and Discourse,” a
yearlong scholarship workshop, a virtual bibliography, and the first legal reader on reproductive
rights and justice with national distribution.

CRRJ will further the University of California’s mission to engage the most difficult topics in a
wide range of legal and public policy subject areas, providing valuable intellectual capital to
public and private sector leaders, the media and the general public, while advancing scholarly

Christopher Edley, the Dean of U.C. Berkeley’s School of Law says, “We welcome the Center on
Reproductive Rights and Justice as the newest addition to our world‐class array of research
centers. We look forward to this new center's thoughtful research that goes beyond simple
polarities, asking us contemplate pressing issues in all their complexities.”