Patricia J. Williams, a professor of law at Columbia University, was born in Boston in 1951 and holds a BA from Wellesley College and a JD from Harvard Law School.
She was a fellow in the School of Criticism and Theory at Dartmouth College and has been an associate professor at the University of Wisconsin School Law School and its department of women's studies. Williams also worked as a consumer advocate in the office of the City Attorney in Los Angeles.
A member of the State Bar of California and the Federal Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit. Williams has served on the advisory council for the Medgar Evers Center for Law and Social Justice of the City University of New York and on the board of governors for the Society of American Law Teachers, among others.
Her publications include Anthony Burns: The Defeat and Triumph of a Fugitive Slave, On Being the Object of Property, The Electronic Transformation of Law and And We Are Not Married: A Journal of Musings on Legal Language and the Ideology of Style. In 1993, Harvard University Press published Williams's The Alchemy of Race & Rights to widespread critical acclaim. She is also author of The Rooster's Egg (Harvard, 1995), Seeing a Color-Blind Future: The Paradox of Race (Reith Lectures, 1997) (Noonday Press, 1998) and, most recently, Open House: On Family Food, Friends, Piano Lessons and The Search for a Room of My Own (Farrar Straus and Giroux, 2004.)
Fifty-three years after Brown v. Board of Education, the Supreme Court will rule on two cases that will decide the future of school integration.
A "wrongful birth" suit by the parents of a dark-skinned baby conceived in vitro raises disturbing questions about the perception of race.
The case of a severely disabled 9-year-old girl whose parents subjected her to a series of nonessential surgeries raises troubling questions about medical ethics and public policy.
The media have fashioned an impossible portrait of Barack Obama: an American cleansed of the baggage of racism and slavery.
Americans have become so sedated, obsessed and afraid, we are numb to the murders committed in our name.
What, exactly, does America look like to people like Michael Richards, Mel Gibson and Richard Viguerie?
What are we to make of those who would equate Muslim women who wear the veil with the threat of terrorism?
A right-wing radio host on the vanguard of the English Only movement
provides a platform for religious crazies to keep them from ruining the
funeral of murdered Amish girls.
As Survivor races to the bottom by dividing this season's contenders into race-based tribes, perhaps we can look to Starbucks for new models of how to blend in.
Teaching children to speak across boundaries is the essence of what
integration is all about. It carries all the urgency of global peace.