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Workshop explores cultural importance of ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’

February 08, 2012

Scholars from around the country will discuss the implications of the classic novel, "To Kill a Mockingbird," more than 50 years after it was published at a workshop at Seattle University School of Law on Friday, March 9.

Harper Lee's book was hailed as changing the consciousness of the nation regarding race relations, illuminating intense racial prejudice, racial oppression and injustice when it was published more than 50 years ago. Advancing the discourse surrounding the 2010 fiftieth anniversary through the lens of critical race theory, workshop participants will offer an examination of the cultural importance of this work, and what it communicates about law and society half a century later.

Topics include the spectacle of race on trial, the ethics of indigent defense, the moral accountability of lawyers and a character study of Atticus Finch as a role model for social justice.  

"Rethinking Harper Lee's 'To Kill a Mockingbird' 50 Years Later: A Critical Race Perspective on Atticus Finch, Tom Robinson and Maycomb County, Alabama," is organized by Professor Natasha Martin, Associate Dean for Research and Faculty Development. Participants include:

  • Bryan Adamson, Associate Professor of Law (Seattle)
  • Janet Ainsworth, John D. Eshelman Professor of Law (Seattle)
  • Kelly Lynn Anders, Director of Communications and Diversity (Creighton)
  • Allison Connelly, Associate Clinical Professor (Kentucky)
  • Frank Rudy Cooper, Professor of Law (Suffolk)
  • Charlton Copeland, Associate Professor (Miami)
  • Lisa Daugaard, The Defender Association (Seattle)
  • Angelique Davis, Assistant Professor (Seattle)
  • Rose Ernst, Assistant Professor (Seattle)
  • Steven Hobbs, Tom Bevill Chairholder of Law (Alabama)
  • Natasha Martin, Associate Dean for Research and Faculty Development (Seattle)
  • Adele M. Morrison, Associate Professor (Wayne State)
  • Camille Nelson, Dean (Suffolk)
  • Mark Niles, Dean (Seattle)
  • Angela Onwuachi-Willig, Charles M. and Marion J. Kierscht Professor of Law (Iowa)
  • Gregory Parks, Assistant Professor (Wake Forest) 
  • Melynda Price, Robert E. Harding, Jr. Associate Professor of Law (Kentucky)
  • J. Christopher Rideout, Professor of Lawyering Skills (Seattle)
  • Catherine Smith, Associate Dean of Institutional Diversity and Inclusiveness (Denver-Sturm)
  • Robin Walker Sterling, Assistant Professor, Criminal Defense Clinic (Denver-Sturm)
  • Bryan Stevenson, Director, Equal Justice Initiative (Alabama)
  • Pamela Taylor, Associate Professor and Director, Center for the Study of Justice (Seattle)
  • Judge Mary Yu, King County Superior Court (Seattle)

For more information and program details, please visit