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Thursday, April 09, 2015

What Prawfs Has Meant for Me

I was a very early reader of Prawfs.  As a law clerk who wanted to join the academy, I trolled the site in the Spring of 2005 between writing bench memos, trying to construct an image of what it meant to be a law professor.

A year into my teaching fellowship, I went to my first academic conference---the Law & Society Annual meeting (it was in Baltimore that year).  While at the conference, I was star-struck when I realized that one of the people in the elevator with me was Dan Markel.  Realizing that this was *the* Dan Markel from PrawfsBlawg, I mustered all of my courage to engage him in conversation.

I won’t bore you all with how Danny (as I now think of him) was quintessentially himself in that elevator.  I’ve already told that story many times (with others) to big crowd (and small ones) in the weeks after he died.


But I will say that, in the months since we’ve lost him, I don’t read Prawfs nearly as often as I used to.  It’s not that the content is worse --- it’s just as good, if not better.  It’s just that I’ve found it difficult to visit the site without thinking of Danny and getting sad.

So I’m grateful that Howard, Paul, and the rest of the Prawfs gang are allowing me to blog again here this month.  Not that blogging here is making me forget Danny.  To the contrary, it’s reminding me that Danny would have had very strong views on many of the topics being posted here, and it’s pushing me to speak a little more and a little louder.  Prawfs made a huge difference for me when I wanted to start teaching and when I finally did.  And I want to do my (very small) part to make sure it continues to do that for others.

Posted by Carissa Byrne Hessick on April 9, 2015 at 01:05 PM | Permalink


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