Professor of Law
B.A., cum laude, Mathematics, 1997 Yale College; M.A., Statistics, 1999, Harvard University; J.D., 2003, Yale Law School; LL.M., 2006, Georgetown University; Member, California and New York State Bars
Phone: (213) 738-5702
As an undergraduate at Yale, Gowri Ramachandran demonstrated that her interests cover a wide spectrum when she received the John Meeker Prize for creative writing and the Anthony D. Stanley Prize for excellence in pure and applied mathematics. She garnered recognition for her pedagogical skills as well, as a teaching fellow at Harvard where she was awarded the Derek Bok Prize for excellence in teaching, and her eventual career path was set. While in law school, she served as editor-in-chief of the Yale Law Journal and as a board member of the Collective of Women of Color and received an Olin Fellowship for Law, Economics and Public Policy Research.
"My main goal is to make students excited and comfortable speaking about the law. I think a lot of students come to law school idealistic and lost that idealism along the way. My goal is to keep them from losing it."
After graduating from law school in 2003, Professor Ramachandran served as law clerk to Judge Sidney R. Thomas of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit in Billings, Montana. She returned to academia a year later, first as a Future Law Professor Fellow at Georgetown University Law Center, then as a visiting professor at Florida State University Law School. She also served as a visiting professor at the University of California, Berkeley School of Law in 2009. She has been a member of the Southwestern faculty since 2006, where she has served as co-editor of the Journal of Legal Education and was named the Irving D. and Florence Rosenberg Professor of Law in 2010, in recognition of her outstanding teaching, professional accomplishments, service and scholarship.
Professor Ramachandran's courses range from Constitutional Law and Federal Courts, to Employment Discrimination and Feminist Legal Theory. "My main goal is to make students excited and comfortable speaking about the law," she said. "I think a lot of students come to law school idealistic and lose that idealism along the way. My goal is to keep them from losing it."
Her own research focuses on employment discrimination and employment law, constitutional law, human rights law, and queer theory. Through her scholarship, Professor Ramachandran challenges conventional notions of image and identity and the laws that shape them, particularly within institutions where personal freedoms are often thought irreconcilable with wider social good, such as workplaces, schools, and prisons. "We're working longer and longer hours, and I think of the workplace as more of a public space," she said. "That's why I'm interested in personal freedoms and equality in the workplace." Currently, she is working on a theory of how certain human rights can help a society insure against collapse.
Books and Chapters
Retaliation for Opposing Harassment and Harassment Because of a Protected Activity, Chapter 16 in SEXUAL HARASSMENT LAW, 2nd ed. (B. Lindemann and D. Kadue, principal authors; BNA Books, 2012)
The Story of Jespersen v. Harrah's: Women and Makeup at Work in EMPLOYMENT LAW STORIES (with D. Carbado and M. Gulati; Foundation Press, 2006)
Delineating the Heinous: Rape, Sex, and Self-Possession, 123 YALE LAW JOURNAL ONLINE 371 (2013)
Introduction, 42 SOUTHWESTERN LAW REVIEW 761 (Symposium Issue, Fall 2013)
Lawyers as 'The Great Social Evil', 62 DEPAUL LAW REVIEW 479 (2013)
Pay Transparency, 116 PENN STATE LAW REVIEW 1043 (2012)
Science Backed Justice, 41 SOUTHWESTERN LAW REVIEW 231 (2012)
Pulling the Ladder up Behind You: Feminism and Family, 9 ISSUES IN LEGAL SCHOLARSHIP 1143 (2011)
Confronting Difference and Finding Common Ground, 34 SEATTLE UNIVERSITY LAW REVIEW 725 (2011)
Assault and Battery on Property, 44 LOYOLA OF LOS ANGELES LAW REVIEW 253 (2010)
Against the Right to Bodily Integrity: Of Cyborgs and Human Rights, 87 DENVER UNIVERSITY LAW REVIEW 1 (2009)
Antisubordination, Rights and Radicalism, 40 CONNECTICUT LAW REVIEW 1045 (2008)
Freedom of Dress: State and Private Regulation of Clothing, Hair, Makeup, Tattoo and Piercing Choices, 66 MARYLAND LAW REVIEW 11 (November 2006)
Intersectionality as 'Catch-22': Why Identity Performance Demands Are Neither Harmless nor Reasonable, 69 ALBANY LAW REVIEW 299 (December 2005)
Book Review, Manliness, 19 YALE J. LAW & FEMINISM 201 (2007)