Call for Abstracts: The Taslitz Galaxy

I ordinarily don’t post calls for abstracts, but I’ll make an exception for this event to honor the life and work of Andrew Taslitz.  Andy’s work was creative and interdisciplinary; he saw things in ways that nobody else did, and his works were filled with insight.  He was also a wonderfully warm and kind person.  His untimely passing is such a devastating loss, not just for the scholarly community, but also because he was such a generous and genuine friend to so many people, including me.  I will miss him greatly.



The Taslitz Galaxy: A Gathering of Scholars at Howard

Howard University School of Law is hosting a conference in honor of Andrew Taslitz. It is not a traditional symposium, for we expect concurrent sessions on many subjects. It is open to people who knew Taz and to those who were inspired by his writing or teaching.

If you would like to take part in this event, please submit an abstract by May 30, 2014 to the co-chairs named below. The conference is free but speakers must pay their own way.

Howard Law Journal is dedicating an issue to Professor Taslitz. If you would like to write a short piece for this issue, let us know when you submit your abstract. First drafts of the paper will be due on August 15, 2014.


  • The Essays will be short, with a maximum of 10,000 words, including footnotes.
  • We are dividing the proposals into two tracks. The first track involves speaking &/or writing on substantive issues. The second track we are calling “The Tao of Taz,” a more personal approach. Both options are explained below.
  • You may suggest a panel for the gathering.

  1. Substantive Topics

Note that your talk may be based on something Taslitz wrote or you may simply incorporate one of his ideas into a new area.

1)    Criminal Procedure/Criminal Law

2)    Race, Gender, and/or Inequality

3)    Animal Rights

4)    Teaching Ideas

5)    Law & __ (aka Social Science in Law)

6)    Evidence

7)    Originalism Reinterpreted (Through the Civil Rights Amendments)

8)    Teaching (aka Pedagogy)


II. “The Tao of Taz”

Every language, culture, and religion has words that convey more than one simple idea. Even though such words often have several layers of meaning, there seems to never be confusion as to what is being said.  However, if you were to ask a dozen people to explain, e.g., “love,” “happiness,” or “success,” you’ll likely hear a dozen different definitions or descriptions. The same is true of the Chinese word “Tao,” which is often translated as “way” or “path.” Although there are many definitions of Tao, there is also an overarching understanding that it communicates an entire philosophy, i.e., an outlook on the fundamental nature of life and The Universe. For example, early Taoist philosophers were heavily influenced by nature and determined that everything has a complementary opposite and can only be understood by comparing it to its opposite. Day is only day in relation to night; cold is so only in relation to heat; soft is only soft in relation to hard. By observing nature’s processes, The Taoist can come to some understanding about the meaning of our lives and about our place in the world, as all things are interdependent. This panel will endeavor to explain “The Tao of Taz.,”



  • Abstracts Due: May 30, 2014.

(Let us know on your submission if you are interested in publishing with the Howard Law Journal)

(Abstracts are short – 250 to 300 words)

(We will get back to you by mid-June, 2014)

  • Essay Submissions of First Draft Due: August 15, 2014.
  • Conference at Howard Law – Tentative date of Friday September 19, 2014 (date not yet confirmed)


Send to co-chairs:

Josephine Ross

Lenese Herbert

Ellen Podgor

For those interested in publishing, please cc:

Cadene Russell (Editor-in-Chief Howard Law Journal)

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