University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law


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Taunya Lovell Banks

Jacob A. France Professor of Equality Jurisprudence

Phone: (410) 706-3850
Fax: (410) 706-6644
tbanks @

Office: 383

BA, 1965, Syracuse University
JD, 1968, Howard University

Biography | Selected Publications

Taunya Lovell Banks is the Jacob A. France Professor of Equality Jurisprudence at the University of Maryland School of Law where she teaches constitutional law, torts, and seminars on law in popular culture (film or literature), citizenship and critical race theory. Prior to entering legal education in 1976, she worked as a civil rights lawyer in Mississippi, litigating voting rights and housing discrimination cases and providing technical assistance to black elected officials. During the 1979-1980 academic year she worked as a senior trial attorney for the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission in Los Angeles, litigating some of the early sexual harassment cases under the interim guidelines.

Professor Banks' most recent publications explore the continuing impact of gender, race, racial formation and racial hierarchies on the quest for social equality. She also writes about law, lawyers and legal issues in film and on television. Earlier publications include several articles and book chapters on legal and public health issues facing women infected with the HIV virus; and an empirical study of gender bias in law school classrooms. She is a contributing co-editor of SCREENING JUSTICE- THE CINEMA OF LAW: FILMS OF LAW, ORDER, AND SOCIAL JUSTICE. Her current research projects include a legal memoir exploring her and the nationís changing views on race from the mid twentieth century through the beginning of the twenty-first century.

Professor Banks served on the Editorial Board of the JOURNAL OF LEGAL EDUCATION and the advisory committee of the LAW & SOCIETY REVIEW. She is a former member of the Association of American Law Schoolsí Executive Committee, and two-term Trustee of the Law School Admissions Council.


Contributing Editor, Screening Justice - The Cinema of Law: Films of Law, Order and Social Justice (2006) (with Rennard Strickland & Teree Foster). [Abstract]

Book Chapters

Race, Place and Historic MomentóBlack and Japanese American World War II Veterans: The G.I. Bill of Rights and the Model Minority Myth, in Minority Relations: Intergroup Conflict and Cooperation (Robert S. Chang & Greg Robinson eds., 2016). [Abstract]

A Darker Shade of Pale Revisited: Disaggregated Blackness and Colorism in the "Post-Racial" Obama Era, in Color Matters: Skin Tone Bias and the Myth of a Postracial America 95 (Kimberly Jade Norwood ed., 2013).

Dark Justice: Women Legal Actors on Basic Cable, in Law and Justice on the Small Screen 135 (Peter Robson & Jessica Silbey eds., 2012). [Abstract]

Black Pluralism in Post Loving America, in Loving v. Virginia: Rethinking Race, Sex, and Marriage in a "Post Racial" World (Kevin Noble Maillard & Rose Cuison Villazar eds., 2012). [Full Text]

Michael Clayton (2007): Women Lawyers Betrayed--Again, in Feminism at the Movies: Understanding Gender and Contemporary Popular Cinema 110 (Hilary Radner & Rebecca Stringer eds., 2011).

Judging the Judges - Daytime Television's Integrated Reality Court Bench, in Lawyers on Television: The Good, the Bad & the Ugly (Michael Asimow ed., 2009) [Full Text]

Multi-Layered Racism: Courtsí Continued Resistance to Colorism Claims, in Shades of Difference: Why Skin Color Matters (Evelyn Nakano Glenn ed., 2009). [Full Text]

Equality and Sorority During the Decade after Brown, in Law Touched Our Hearts: A Generation Remembers Brown v. Board of Education 161 (Mildred Wigfall Robinson & Richard J. Bonnie eds., 2009). [Full Text]

Balancing Competing Individual Constitutional Rights: Raising Some Questions, in Law and Rights: Global Perspectives on Constitutionalism and Governance (Penelope Andrews & Susan Bazilli eds., 2008). [Full Text]

To Kill a Mockingbird: Lawyering in an Unjust Society, in Screening Justice - The Cinema of Law: Films of Law, Order and Social Justice (Rennard Strickland et al. eds., 2006) [Full Text]

The Black Side of the Mirror: The Black Body in the Workplace, in Sister Circle: Black Women and Work 13 (Sharon Harley ed., 2002). [Abstract]


Select Articles. For a complete listing of my publications, see my Selected Works page.

Civil Trials: A Film Illusion?, 85 Fordham Law Review 1969 (2017). [Full Text]

Obama and the Supremes: A Legacy - The Rise of Women's Voices on the Court, 65 Drake Law Review 911 (2017). [Full Text]

Colorism Among South Asians: Title VII and Skin Tone Discrimination, 14 Washington University Global Studies Law Review 665 (2015). [Full Text]

Post-Katrina Suppression of Black Working-Class Political Expression, 22 Journal of Public Management & Social Policy, no. 2, art. 2 (2015). [Full Text]

Still Drowning in Segregation: Limits of Law in Post-Civil Rights America, 32 Law & Inequality 215 (2014). [Full Text]

The Unfinished Journey - Education, Equality and Martin Luther King, Jr., Revisited, 58 Villanova Law Review 471 (2013). [Full Text]

Funding Race as Biology: The Relevance of "Race" in Medical Research, 12 Minnesota Journal of Law, Science & Technology 571 (2011). [Full Text]

Thurgood Marshall, the Race Man, and Gender Equality in the Courts, 18 Virginia Journal of Social Policy & the Law 15 (2010). [Full Text]

Troubled Waters: Mid-Twentieth Century American Society on "Trial" in the Films of John Waters, 39 Stetson Law Review 153 (2009). [Full Text]

Outsider Citizens: Film Narratives About the Internment of Japanese Americans, 42 Suffolk University Law Review 769 (2009). [Full Text]

Trampling Whose Rights? Democratic Majority Rule and Racial Minorities: A Response to Chin and Wagner, 43 Harvard Civil Rights-Civil Liberties Law Review 127 (2008). [Full Text]

Dangerous Woman: Elizabeth Key's Freedom Suit - Subjecthood and Racialized Identity in Seventeenth Century Colonial Virginia, 41 Akron Law Review 799 (2008). [Full Text]

Mestizaje and the Mexican Mestizo Self: No Hay Sangre Negra, So There Is No Blackness, 15 Southern California Interdisciplinary Law Journal 199 (2006), anthologized in The Latino/a Condition: A Critical Reader (Richard Delgado & Jean Stefancic eds., 2d ed. 2010). [Full Text]

Brown at 50: Reconstructing Brownís Promise, 44 Washburn Law Journal 31 (2005). [Full Text]

Setting the Record Straight: Maryland's First Black Women Law Graduates, 63 Maryland Law Review 752 (2004). [Full Text]

Exploring White Resistance to Racial Reconciliation in the United States, 55 Rutgers Law Review 903 (2003). [Full Text]

Both Edges of the Margin: Blacks and Asians in Mississippi Masala, Barriers to Coalition Building, 5 Asian Law Journal 7 (1998), reprinted in The Conflict and Culture Reader (Pat K. Chew, ed. 2001) and in Law Through Asian American Eyes: A Critical Inquiry for Multi-Racial America (Eric Yamamoto et al. eds., 2002). [Full Text]

Toward a Global Critical Feminist Vision: Domestic Work and the Nanny Tax Debate, 3 Journal of Gender, Race and Justice 1 (1999), reprinted in Critical Race Feminism: A Reader (Adrien Wing ed., 2d ed. 2002), and in Beyond Essentialism: A Reader at the Intersections of Race, Class and Gender (Nancy Dowd & Michelle Jacobs eds., 2002). [Full Text]

Colorism: A Darker Shade of Pale, 47 U.C.L.A. Law Review 1705 (2000), reprinted in Mixed Race America: A Critical Reader (Kevin R. Johnson ed., 2002). [Full Text]

Women and AIDS: Racism, Sexism, and Classism, 17 New York University Review of Law & Social Change 351 (1989-90). [Full Text]

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Copyright © 2018, University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law. All Rights Reserved