Jean Stefancic

Jean Stefancic

Research Professor


  • Civil Rights
  • Critical Race Theory


  • M.A., University of San Francisco
  • B.A., Maryville College


Jean Stefancic writes about law reform, social change, and legal scholarship. She has written and co-authored fifty articles and fifteen books, many with her husband Richard Delgado. Their book, Critical White Studies: Looking Behind the Mirror, won a Gustavus Myers award for outstanding book on human rights in North America in 1998.

Her book, How Lawyers Lose Their Way: A Profession Fails Its Creative Minds, examines the causes of lawyers' unhappiness. An earlier book, No Mercy: How Conservative Think Tanks and Foundations Changed America's Social Agenda, is "a superb guide to the right wing counter-revolution which has changed the face of America " according to one reviewer; was described by Jonathan Kozol as an "enormously valuable book, written with remarkable contrast and even-handedness;" praised by Herbert Gans, as a "careful and comprehensive accounting of who did what in trying to kill liberal programs and policies;" and recommended by the New York Law Journal as a "clarion call to those of us who have too long remained complacent that things will return to the more humane thinking of the bygone Great Society."

Her awards and honors include Derrick Bell Legacy Award, Critical Race Studies in Education Association, 2013.  Fellow, Bogliasco Foundation, Liguria Study Center for the Arts and Humanities, Genoa, Italy, 2001.  Scholar in Residence, Rockefeller Foundation International Study Center, Bellagio, Italy, 1993.

During her ten years at the University of Colorado law school, she was affiliated with the Latino/a Research & Policy Center and on the advisory committee of the Center of the American West. While teaching at the University of Pittsburgh law school, she was Research Professor & Derrick Bell Scholar. At the University of Alabama she served as Professor & Clement Research Affiliate.


Key/Recent Publications

Selected Books

  • Critical Race Theory: An Introduction, (NYU Press, 3d ed. 2018).
  • Race and Races: Cases and Resources for a Diverse America, (West Group, 3d ed. 2015).
  • The Latino/a Condition: A Critical Reader, (NYU Press, 2d ed. 2011).
  • How Lawyers Lose Their Way: A Profession Fails Its Creative Minds (Duke University Press, 2005).
  • No Mercy: How Conservative Think Tanks and Foundations Changed America’s Social Agenda (Temple University Press 1996).

Selected Articles

  • Lessons from Mexican Folklore: U.S. Immigration Policy, Child Separation, and La Llorona, 81 U. Pitt. L. Rev. 286 (2020).
  • Law, Religion, and Racial Justice: A Comment on Derrick Bell’s Last Article, 69 Case W. Res. L. Rev. 341 (2018).
  • Southern Dreams and a New Theory of First Amendment Legal Realism, 65 Emory L.J. 303 (2015).
  • Terrace v. Thompson and the Legacy of Manifest Destiny 12 Nev. L.J. 532 (2012).
  • Images of the Outsider in American Law and Culture: Can Free Expression Remedy Systemic Social Ills? 77 Cornell L. Rev. 1258 (1992).
  • Why Do We Tell the Same Stories? Law Reform, Critical Librarianship, and the Triple Helix Dilemma, 42 Stan. L. Rev. 207 (1989).