On Sept. 5, U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Elena Kagan ’86 joined Dean Martha Minow for a conversation on life as a Supreme Court justice. The former and current deans spoke before an overflow audience in the Wasserstein Hall, Caspersen Student Center, Clinical Wing building.
During the event, their discussion touched on many topics ranging from Kagan’s current reading group at HLS on the Supreme Court’s 2011 term to courtroom issues—including the role oral argument plays and the use of cameras in the courtroom. Said Kagan when asked about the role of the justices’ clerks: “They’re a fount of ideas, they’re a fount of information. They wander around the building and find out a lot about what other people are thinking. There’s a kind of clerks gossip network, and I encourage them to schmooze.”
The event was sponsored by the Harvard Federalist Society, HLS American Constitution Society and the Dean of Students Office. To hear more about the inner workings of the Court and what Kagan does with her summer breaks, watch the full video on the HLS website.
Kagan served as dean of the Law School from 2003 to 2009 and as solicitor general of the United States from 2009 to 2010. This fall at Harvard Law School, Kagan led a reading group on the court, as the Archibald Cox Visiting Professor of Law.