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Sunday, May 17, 2009

The University of Chicago Class of 2001: A Post by Eugene Kontorovich

I'm happy to observe that 25% of the guest bloggers here were at the University of Chicago law school together. Mark Blitz and I were in the same class, with John Pfaff, a JD/PHD, a year below I believe. This led me to think about my other classmates in academia, and I've realized there are quite a lot of them. Bill Henderson at Indiana, the noted scholar (and blogger) of the legal services market itself, who was good enough to save me from disaster by sharing his Contracts outline, Danny Sokol at Florida; Josh Fairfield at Washington and Lee; Jonathan Mitchell and Adam Mossoff both at my former haunt; and my dear friend Hermine Hayes-Klein  teaching Torts at the Hague University. (My apologies to anyone I have inadvertently neglected in this off-the-cuff inventory.) That's really not bad for a class of 180-something. That is a more than 4% teaching rate, well above Chicago's recent performance.


It is a particularly impressive group that honors by association. Readers here will be interested to note that it's also a very bloggy bunch. Sokol has a blog on antitrust and competition policy; Henderson on the legal profession; Fairfield contributes to a blog about something to do with technology; Hayes-Klein runs a blog on the Federalist papers. Aven antediluvians like Mossoff  and myself have recently guest-blogged at the Volokh conspiracy and elsewhere; he talked about early manual sewing machines and I about pirates so it's not surprising we are not in the digital vanguard with our classmates.


This leads me to think about the much discussed relationship between blogging and academic success/tenure. I have no opinion on whether blogging can contribute to success; I can see how it can cut both ways and it depends chiefly on whether blogging is a compliment or substitute to traditional scholarship. But I suspect even if blogging does not cause success, success will cause blogging. What I mean is that smart dynamic people with a lot to say will wind up looking for additional avenues in which to do so; their cups run over. Consider ”my judge,” who has not one but two. Thus I would predict top law professors would be overrepresented amongst the ranks of law professor bloggers.

Posted by Administrators on May 17, 2009 at 09:16 PM in Life of Law Schools | Permalink


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Posted by: peterkaz | Oct 21, 2009 6:21:00 AM

Actually, Bill H. is doubly bloggy; there's also the ELS Blog, of which he's a founder and an ongoing contributor.


Posted by: C. Zorn | May 18, 2009 5:00:13 PM

of course we should add Scott Sullivan, who is joining the faculty at LSU next year and was a VAP at Texas this year. he was enlisted entirely inadvertently, as I actually began thinking along these lines at a conference of national security law profs in Austin a few months ago, where Scott and Mark were in attendance. Another interesting tidbit is that three of these folks were transfer students and at least one had a "non-traditional" path to law school. Admissions officers and prospective profs, take note.

Posted by: Eugene Kontorovich | May 18, 2009 12:25:29 PM

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