Intellectual Life Workshop: Serena Mayeri

Wednesday, August 21, 2019 at 12:00pm to 1:00pm

Law Building (LAW), 3500
401 East Peltason Drive Irvine, CA 92697-8000

Serena Mayeri, Professor of Law and History, University of Pennsylvania Law School
American legal history, employment discrimination law, family law

Double Standards: Sex, Sexuality, and Marital Status in the Long 1970s

The paper is a draft chapter drawn from Professor Mayeri's book manuscript in progress, which is tentatively titled The Status of Marriage: Marital Supremacy Challenged and Remade, 1960-2000. The chapter chronicles how plaintiffs and their lawyers used new constitutional and statutory weapons to challenge restrictions on public employment and military service for schoolteachers (and servicewomen) who became pregnant outside of marriage; engaged in nonmarital cohabitation; or were known to be gay or lesbian. Focusing on occupations in which moral character and community standards of morality persisted as qualifications for employment, the chapter traces how arguments based on sexual privacy, equal protection, sex and marital status discrimination—among others—fared in and out of court from the late 1960s through the early 1980s.

Lunch will be provided.

Intellectual Life Workshop Calendar

Event Type



Staff, Faculty


Intellectual Life Workshop


Centers, Intellectual Life
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