Portrait of Professor Erika Rackley

Professor Erika Rackley

Professor of Law
Co-Director of Postgraduate Studies

About

Erika Rackley’s principal research interests are in law, gender and feminism, with a particular focus judicial diversity and the nature of judging, feminist legal history and image-based sexual abuse (including ‘revenge porn’). Alongside her sole-authored research, she has co-led large collaborative, cross-disciplinary research projects including the Feminist Judgments Project (with Rosemary Hunter and Clare McGlynn) and, more recently, the Women’s Legal Landmarks Project (with Rosemary Auchmuty). 

Her individual and co-authored scholarship has shaped legislation and policy in the UK and has been widely cited by senior members of the national and international judiciary and in government, parliamentary and policy/NGO reports. It has been supported by research grants from the AHRC, ESRC, British Academy, Leverhulme Trust and Australian Research Council. In 2014 was awarded a Phillip Leverhulme Prize in recognition of her achievements and scholarship in the field of law. Erika regularly comments in the media and tweets at @erikarackley.

Research interests

Erika Rackley’s current research concentrates on three broad areas: judging and the judiciary (including feminist judgments), feminist legal history and image-based sexual abuse. She is working on a number of sole and collaborative projects across these themes, including on the UK Supreme Court, the workings and influence of the Judicial Appointments Commission, the methodology of feminist legal history, and on the prevalence, nature and impacts of image-based sexual abuse in the UK, Australia and New Zealand (funded by an Australian Research Council Discovery Grant lead by Nicola Henry, RMIT)

Teaching

Erika teaches Tort.

Supervision

Potential research students with a research proposal are encouraged to contact Professor Rackley by email.

Publications

Showing 50 of 53 total publications in the Kent Academic Repository. View all publications.

Article

  • Hunter, R. and Rackley, E. (2020). Feminist Judgments on the UK Supreme Court. Canadian Journal of Women and the Law [Online] 32:85-113. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.3138 / cjwl.32.1.04.
    Prompted by two of the premises of feminist judgment-writing projects – that feminist judgments are relatively rare in the ‘real world’, and that they make a valuable contribution to jurisprudence and to the quality of justice – this article explores feminist judgment writing on the UK Supreme Court. Drawing on a database of over 570 cases, the article investigates who writes feminist judgments on the UK Supreme Court, what kind of feminist judgments they write, and what the feminist judgments add to the Court’s jurisprudence and the quality of justice it dispenses. It finds that among judges employing feminist reasoning, Lady Hale was by far the most active, but she was not alone, with Lords Kerr and Wilson also writing several feminist judgments. A range of different type of feminist reasoning was deployed and feminist judgments generally did constitute better judging, although their impact tended to be more discursive than substantive. The article concludes by considering the implications of these findings for both feminist debates and for the UK Supreme Court and the litigants appearing before it.
  • Hunter, R. and Rackley, E. (2018). Judicial leadership on the UK Supreme Court. Legal Studies [Online] 38:191-220. Available at: https://dx.doi.org/10.1017/lst.2017.19.
    This paper examines judicial leadership on the UK Supreme Court. It does not confine itself to the formal roles of the President and Deputy President. Rather, building on existing categories of judicial leadership, including administrative, jurisprudential and community leadership, it considers the contributions of all 12 Justices. In so doing, it provides a significant compilation of quantitative data on the activities of the Justices of the Supreme Court both on and off the bench from the the Court's inception in 2009 to the end of the 2014-2015 legal year. From this, we suggest that while a number of the Justices engaged in one or two broad forms of leadership-with Lady Hale in particular demonstrating a substantial degree of leadership across all three dimensions- A t the other end of the spectrum, at least on the measures used in this paper, a significant minority did not. In the light of this, and the significant number of recent and forthcoming retirements from the Court, the paper concludes by considering the implications of our findings for the future of the Court. We argue that these retirements will result in gaps in both formal and informal judicial leadership, and it is vital that these gaps are filled by appointees who are capable of, and prepared to step up to, diverse and varied forms of judicial leadership.
  • McGlynn, C. and Rackley, E. (2017). More than ’Revenge Porn’: image-based sexual abuse and the reform of Irish law. Irish Probation Journal [Online] 14:38-51. Available at: http://www.probation.ie/en/PB/Pages/WP17000058.
    Summary: In the past few years, there have been a worrying number of press reports detailing the extent and harms of ‘revenge porn’. In response, governments across the world have begun to take action, often adopting new criminal laws. However, both the term ‘revenge porn’ and many of these new laws are limited and fail to cover the nature and breadth of this growing phenomenon. Accordingly, the current law reform discussions in Ireland are taking place at an opportune moment. Ireland has a real opportunity to learn from the mistakes of other urisdictions and to introduce an effective package of measures to reduce the prevalence of these pernicious practices. But in doing so, it will be vital that law and policy looks beyond the paradigmatic example of ‘revenge porn’, where a vengeful ex-partner shares private sexual images without consent. To be truly comprehensive, and to ‘future-proof’ legislation in a context of rapidly changing technology, the legislation must encompass the range of activities increasingly understood and ceptualised as ‘image-based sexual abuse’.
  • McGlynn, C. and Rackley, E. (2017). Image-based sexual abuse. Oxford Journal of Legal Studies [Online] 37:534-561. Available at: https://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ojls/gqw033.
    Advances in technology have transformed and expanded the ways in which sexual violence can be perpetrated. One new manifestation of such violence is the non-consensual creation and/or distribution of private sexual images: what we conceptualise as 'image-based sexual abuse'. This article delineates the scope of this new concept and identifies the individual and collective harms it engenders. We argue that the individual harms of physical and mental illness, together with the loss of dignity, privacy and sexual autonomy, combine to constitute a form of cultural harm that impacts directly on individuals, as well as on society as a whole. While recognising the limits of law, we conclude by considering the options for redress and the role of law, seeking to justify the deployment of the expressive and coercive powers of criminal and civil law as a means of encouraging cultural change.
  • McGlynn, C., Rackley, E. and Houghton, R. (2017). Beyond ‘Revenge Porn’: The Continuum of Image-Based Sexual Abuse. Feminist Legal Studies [Online] 25:25-46. Available at: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10691-017-9343-2.
    In the last few years, many countries have introduced laws combating the phenomenon colloquially known as ‘revenge porn’. While new laws criminalising this practice represent a positive step forwards, the legislative response has been piecemeal and typically focuses only on the practices of vengeful ex-partners. Drawing on Liz Kelly’s (Surviving sexual violence. Polity Press, Cambridge, 1988) pioneering work, we suggest that ‘revenge porn’ should be understood as just one form of a range of gendered, sexualised forms of abuse which have common characteristics, forming what we are conceptualising as the ‘continuum of image-based sexual abuse’. Further, we argue that image-based sexual abuse is on a continuum with other forms of sexual violence. We suggest that this twin approach may enable a more comprehensive legislative and policy response that, in turn, will better reflect the harms to victim-survivors and lead to more appropriate and effective educative and preventative strategies.
  • Auchmuty, R. and Rackley, E. (2016). The Women’s Legal Landmarks Project: Celebrating 100 Years of Women in the Law in the UK and Ireland. Legal Information Management [Online] 16:30-34. Available at: https://doi.org/10.1017/S1472669616000104.
    This article by Rosemary Auchmuty and Erika Rackley introduces the Women's Legal Landmarks Project. The project is an interdisciplinary collaboration involving feminist scholars from law and other disciplines engaging in the process of identifying, researching and producing critical accounts of the key legal events, cases and statutes which represent significant turning points for women in the UK and Ireland. In creating the first scholarly anthology of legal landmarks for women spanning four jurisdictions and spanning eleven centuries, it seeks to contribute both to the development of the discipline of feminist legal history as well as societal understandings of the contribution women have made to public life and, more specifically, their involvement in the production of law, law reform and justice.
  • Rackley, E. and McGlynn, C. (2013). Prosecuting the possession of extreme pornography: A misunderstood and mis-used law. Criminal Law Review 2013:400-405.
    On 8th August 2012, Simon Walsh was acquitted of five counts of possessing extreme pornography. The case was not, of course, the first prosecution under the extreme pornography provisions contained in the Criminal Justice and Immigration Act 2008 (CJIA). Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) figures indicate that there were 799 prosecutions in 2011. However, unlike many of the other prosecutions, Walsh’s case was the focus of extensive public debate. It was touted in the press as a ‘landmark’ case defining the boundaries of the extreme pornography provisions, in which ‘common sense prevailed’ through a ‘sensible jury verdict’. There are two particular features of this case which meant that it garnered such attention. First, Simon Walsh was a high profile defendant. At the time of his arrest he was a barrister, politician, and magistrate, as well as (according to newspaper reports) a close aide of the London Mayor, Boris Johnson. Second, his trial was live-tweeted by Walsh’s solicitor, Myles Jackman and by PhD student Alex Dymock to over 8,000 followers. Notwithstanding this publicity, R v Walsh is unreported. Accordingly, while this article draws on the public tweets and press reports, it is recognised that neither are authoritative sources of information and that it is important to treat both with great caution. Nonetheless, and with these caveats in mind, the Walsh case provides an opportunity to revisit what continues to be a misunderstood and, in this case, mis-used, law.
  • Rackley, E. (2013). The Neuberger Experiment. New Law Journal [Online] 7573. Available at: https://www.newlawjournal.co.uk/content/neuberger-experiment.
    Do female judges change the substance of decision-making, asks Erika Rackley.
  • Rackley, E. (2012). Why Feminist legal scholars should write judgments: Reflections on the Feminist judgments project in England and Wales. Canadian Journal of Women and the Law [Online] 24:389-413. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.3138/cjwl.24.2.389.
    The Feminist Judgments Project was a collaboration in which a group of feminist legal scholars wrote alternative feminist judgments in significant legal cases in England and Wales. Rather than simply producing academic critiques of existing judgments, the participants, following in the footsteps of the Women's Court of Canada, engaged in a practical, "real world" exercise of judgment writing. By putting feminist theory into judgment form, the Feminist Judgments Project sought to harness the power and distinctiveness of judgment writing in order to demonstrate in a sustained and disciplined way how the cases could have been decided and how the judgments could be written differently. To date, academic commentary has primarily focused on the feminist substance of the alternative judgments or, more broadly, on what makes judgments feminist, rather than on the significance of feminist scholars writing judgments. Drawing on examples from the Feminist Judgments Project, this article argues that, in addition to seeing how feminist theoretical insights can (and should) play out "in practice," the Feminist Judgments Project and Women's Court also raise questions about the nature and possibilities of judgment writing for feminist legal scholarship. In considering the value of judgment writing as a form of feminist critical scholarship, the article takes up the presentation of the Feminist Judgments Project as a form of "academic activism" to argue that there are strong academic, educational, and political reasons why feminist legal scholars should write judgments.
  • Rackley, E. (2010). In conversation with Lord Justice Etherton : revisiting the case for a more diverse judiciary. Public Law [Online] 2010:655-662. Available at: https://www.sweetandmaxwell.co.uk/Catalogue/ProductDetails.aspx?productid=30791427&recordid=469.
    Discusses the debate over the need for a greater judicial diversity of experiences, referring to suggestions by Lord Justice Etherton. Outlines the three main arguments for such an increase in judicial diversity, namely those relating to the democratic legitimacy of the judiciary, arguments for equity and social justice, and notions of "difference" or perspective. Notes arguments surrounding the role of women in the judiciary. Considers the view that certain characteristics such as candidates' sex or ethnicity are irrelevant in comparison to the need for judges to be competent and achieve their position through individual merit.
  • Rackley, E. (2009). Detailing judicial difference. Feminist Legal Studies [Online] 17:11-26. Available at: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10691-009-9107-8.
    In January 2004 Baroness Brenda Hale became the first woman to sit on the Appellate Committee of the House of Lords. Five years on, she has brought to her judicial role a lightness of touch that belies her increasingly significant impact on the court's jurisprudence. Early forecasts that she would be "just a bit different" from her male companions have proved prophetic. However such assessments have stemmed primarily from a focus on her decision-making on a case-by-case basis. But what of her jurisprudence as a whole? This paper considers arguments for a more sustained and coherent methodological approach to analyses of Baroness Hale's (and other judges') jurisprudence as a framework through which to better understand and explore the potential of judicial difference and to better inform current debates about increasing judicial diversity in England and Wales.
  • McGlynn, C. and Rackley, E. (2009). Criminalising extreme pornography: A lost opportunity. Criminal Law Review:245-260.
    This article considers provisions criminalising the possession of "extreme pornography" in the Criminal Justice and Immigration Act 2008. It begins by outlining the current criminal law regime governing pornography, before considering the new measures in detail. We highlight the areas which are most likely to witness challenges, and the areas about which confusion seems inevitable. We close by considering the arguments for proscribing the possession of extreme pornography and possible ways forward, while recognising that, regrettably, the legislative opportunity to take action in this field has most likely now been lost.
  • McGlynn, C., Rackley, E. and Ward, I. (2009). Judging destricted. King’s Law Journal [Online] 20:53-67. Available at: https://doi.org/10.1080/09615768.2009.11427720.
    The film Destricted purports to explore the boundaries of art and pornography. Awarded an '18' certificate by the British Board of Film Classification (BBFC), the film nonetheless contains images of sexual violence and childlike sexual activity. In the context of the so-called 'porn wars' of the 1970s and 1980s, this article examines Destricted, challenging the BBFC classification and, in doing so, arguing the case for a regulatory regime that is responsive to the pragmatics as well as the principles of ethical judgement.
  • Rackley, E. (2008). What a difference difference makes: Gendered harms and judicial diversity. International Journal of the Legal Profession [Online] 15:37-56. Available at: https://doi.org/10.1080/09695950802439783.
    Taking the UK Ministry of Justice's ongoing quest to ensure a more diverse judiciary as its starting point and backdrop, this paper establishes the House of Lords' decision in Secretary of State for the Home Department v. K (FC); Fornah (FC) v. Secretary of State for the Home Department 2006 as a lens through which to explore the ‘difference’ of the woman judge and, in particular, the developing jurisprudence of Baroness Hale—the first (and only) female law lord in the UK. It argues that Baroness Hale's candid recognition and articulation of the gendered nature of the experiences and violence in Fornah's story reveals not only the difference difference (in whatever form) might make to understandings of the judge, judging and justice but also the importance of recognising the transformative potential of judicial diversity to create a space in which difference is celebrated and valued on its own terms, a place where difference can truly make a difference.
  • Rackley, E. (2007). From Arachne to Charlotte : an imaginative revisiting of Gilligan’s in a different voice. William & Mary Journal of Women and the Law [Online] 13:751-774. Available at: https://scholarship.law.wm.edu/wmjowl/vol13/iss3/4/.
    Almost 25 years after its gentle narrative first captured the imagination of its readers, Carol Gilligan?s In a Different Voice remains one of the most influential feminist works of all time. Its articulation of different ways of understanding moral conflict and self gave a voice, literally, to women who felt excluded or silenced by the monophonic and abstracted hierarchy of traditional moral reasoning and psychological theory. And yet to some, the voice Gilligan articulates is not just unintelligible but also dangerously misguided. Its sinister presence stalks conversations about difference, luring the participants into the quagmire of essentialism. As they dice with the fate of Arachne, Gilligan?s webs of care and connection are increasingly seen as out-dated places of entrapment and even death. However, love it or hate it, the haunting omnipotence of its narrative ensures that it continues to have operative effects. Indifference is not an option; evasion is futile. So viewed, it is perhaps time to revisit its taken-for-granted familiarity and the habitual dismissals of its insights; to look again at the possibilities offered by a different voice. Taking the application of In a Different Voice to law as its starting point and backdrop, this paper seeks to utilise the aching familiarity and impending doom that pervades and threatens to stifle conversations ignited by attempts by feminist legal scholars to articulate a different voice in law. As these efforts to identify (with varying degrees of success) the woman lawyer?s different voice fall silent, it seems that, at least in terms of everyday practice, a different voice is more mythical than real. Neither a eulogy nor an epitaph, the paper goes on, through an exploration of E. B. White?s Charlotte?s Web, to offer an alternative understanding of Gilligan?s different voice as a fictional device or myth. It is suggested that its ongoing promise to law (and other academic disciplines) lies not in its difference per se (as previously imagined), but rather in its ability to render contingent particular, but dominant, forms of reasoning and decision-making
  • McGlynn, C. and Rackley, E. (2007). Striking a balance: Arguments for the criminal regulation of extreme pornography. Criminal Law Review 2007:677-690.
    This article examines the government's proposals to criminalise the possession of extreme pornography. Drawing on the diverse responses to the government's 2005 Consultation Paper, it argues that the "categories" approach to regulating pornography, underpinned by a focus on "harm to women", is preferable to the traditional morality-based obscenity standard found in the Obscene Publications Act 1959.
  • Rackley, E. (2007). Judicial diversity, the woman judge and fairy tale endings. Legal Studies [Online] 27:74-94. Available at: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1748-121X.2006.00039.x.
    The story of the woman judge as one of exclusion and isolation plagued with allegations of bias is well documented. Interestingly, despite significant differences in time and place, a common theme unites these tales: the woman judge is a dangerous outsider, a threat to the aesthetic norm. The judicial climate, at least in most of the common law world, is somewhat chilly: reactions to her presence on the bench vary from the largely indifferent to the downright hostile. Why is this? After all, most people, perhaps acknowledging the political and democratic gains underlying calls for a more representative judiciary, would wish to encourage – or at least not discourage – judicial diversity. Taking the stories of the woman judge as its starting point, this paper contends that underlying these tales is an image of the judge that is as much intuitive as it is reasoned; that our understanding of the judge and judging is as much derived from the imagination as from what is conventionally considered as rational thought. Thus, the paper deploys the narrative strategies of fairy tales in an attempt to disrupt the imaginative hold of familiar yet particular images that infuse and distort current discourses on adjudication. It suggests that despite the Department for Constitutional Affairs’ ongoing quest to increase diversity within the judiciary, current initiatives do not confront fully these instinctive images. As a result, their narrative of inclusiveness and difference fails. In response, the paper appeals to the imagination as a route toward engendering new conceptions on the judge and judging, the possibility of truly diverse judiciaries and, perhaps, a fairy tale ending to the woman judge’s story.
  • Rackley, E. and McGlynn, C. (2007). The Politics of Porn. New Law Journal [Online]:1142-1143. Available at: https://www.newlawjournal.co.uk/content/politics-porn.
  • Rackley, E. (2006). Difference in the House of Lords. Social and Legal Studies [Online] 15:163-185. Available at: https://doi.org/10.1177/0964663906063567.
    Taking the media reaction to Brenda Hale's appointment to the appellate committee of the House of Lords in January 2004 as its starting point, this article considers the impact difference might have on understandings of both the judge and judging. It argues that beneath the surface of the somewhat simplistic personality-based alternatives posited in the British press lies a more organic response to the woman judge generally and her perceived difference. Drawing on Hale's potential for difference in relation to familial (dis)connection, unwanted parenthood and indecent assault, the article concludes that, far from being a malevolent threat, the perceived difference of the woman judge offers an opportunity to consider the possibility of alternative adjudicative approaches and new understandings of the judge.

Book

  • Horsey, K. and Rackley, E. (2015). Kidner’s Casebook on Torts (13th Edition). Oxford University Press.
    Kidner's Casebook on Torts is the essential companion for undergraduate tort law students, providing a comprehensive portable library of leading cases in the field. Kirsty Horsey and Erika Rackley, authors of the best-selling tort law textbook, combine their talents again to update Kidner's popular casebook; bringing together an impressive range of carefully edited extracts and combining insightful commentary with questions and further reading suggestions to help you analyse the key elements of each case and take your research further. The text is supported by an Online Resource Centre which provides a comprehensive suite of resources, including downloadable annotated cases and judgments, flashcard glossary, web links and video clips of current items.
  • Rackley, E. (2012). Women, Judging and the Judiciary: From Difference to Diversity. [Online]. Routledge. Available at: https://www.routledge.com/Women-Judging-and-the-Judiciary-From-Difference-to-Diversity-1st-Edition/Rackley/p/book/9780415548618.
    Awarded the 2013 Birks Book Prize by the Society of Legal Scholars, Women, Judging and the Judiciary expertly examines debates about gender representation in the judiciary and the importance of judicial diversity. It offers a fresh look at the role of the (woman) judge and the process of judging and provides a new analysis of the assumptions which underpin and constrain debates about why we might want a more diverse judiciary, and how we might get one.
    Through a theoretical engagement with the concepts of diversity and difference in adjudication, Women, Judging and the Judiciary contends that prevailing images of the judge are enmeshed in notions of sameness and uniformity: images which are so familiar that their grip on our understandings of the judicial role are routinely overlooked. Failing to confront these instinctive images of the judge and of judging, however, comes at a price. They exclude those who do not fit this mould, setting them up as challengers to the judicial norm. Such has been the fate of the woman judge. But while this goes some way to explaining why, despite repeated efforts, our attempts to secure greater diversity in our judiciary have fallen short, it also points a way forward. For, by getting a clearer sense of what our judges really do and how they do it, we can see that women judges and judicial diversity more broadly do not threaten but rather enrich the judiciary and judicial decision-making. As such, the standard opponent to measures to increase judicial diversity – the necessity of appointment on merit – is in fact its greatest ally: a judiciary is stronger and the justice it dispenses better the greater the diversity of its members, so if we want the best judiciary we can get, we should want one which is fully diverse.
    Women, Judging and the Judiciary will be of interest to legal academics, lawyers and policy makers working in the fields of judicial diversity, gender and adjudication and, more broadly, to anyone interested in who our judges are and what they do.
  • Horsey, K. and Rackley, E. (2009). Tort Law. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Book section

  • Rackley, E. and Horsey, K. (2018). Tort Law. In: Great Debates in Gender and Law. Palgrave Macmillan. Available at: https://www.macmillanihe.com/page/detail/Great-Debates-in-Gender-and-Law/?K=9781137610997.
  • Auchmuty, R. and Rackley, E. (2018). Women’s Legal Landmarks: An Introduction. In: Auchmuty, R. and Rackley, E. eds. Women’s Legal Landmarks: Celebrating the History of Women and Law in the UK and Ireland. Hart Publishing. Available at: https://www.bloomsburyprofessional.com/uk/womens-legal-landmarks-9781782259794/.
  • Rackley, E. (2018). Section 2 of the Abusive Behaviour and Sexual Harm (Scotland) Act 2016. In: Rackley, E. and Auchmuty, R. eds. Women’s Legal Landmarks: Celebrating the History of Women and Law in the UK and Ireland. Hart Publishing. Available at: https://www.bloomsburyprofessional.com/uk/womens-legal-landmarks-9781782259794/.
  • Rackley, E. and Auchmuty, R. (2018). First Woman President of the UK Supreme Court, Brenda Hale, 2017. In: Women’s Legal Landmarks: Celebrating the History of Women and Law in the UK and Ireland. Hart Publishing. Available at: https://www.bloomsburyprofessional.com/uk/womens-legal-landmarks-9781782259794/.
  • Rackley, E. and Webb, C. (2017). Three models of diversity. In: Gee, G. and Rackley, E. eds. Debating Judicial Appointments in an Age of Diversity. Taylor & Francis, pp. 283-298. Available at: https://doi.org/10.4324/9781315400068.
  • Gee, G. and Rackley, E. (2017). Preface. In: Gee, G. and Rackley, E. eds. Debating Judicial Appointments in an Age of Diversity. Taylor & Francis, p. vii. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.4324/9781315400068.
  • Gee, G. and Rackley, E. (2017). Preface. In: Gee, G. and Rackley, E. eds. Debating Judicial Appointments in an Age of Diversity. Routledge, p. vii. Available at: https://www.routledge.com/Debating-Judicial-Appointments-in-an-Age-of-Diversity-1st-Edition/Gee-Rackley/p/book/9781138225350.
  • Gee, G. and Rackley, E. (2017). Introduction: Diversity and the JAC’s first ten years. In: Gee, G. ed. Debating Judicial Appointments in an Age of Diversity. Taylor & Francis, pp. 1-21. Available at: https://doi.org/10.4324/9781315400068.
  • Rackley, E. (2013). Rethinking Judicial Diversity. In: Schultz, U. and Shaw, G. eds. Gender and Judging. Hart Publishing. Available at: https://www.bloomsburyprofessional.com/uk/gender-and-judging-9781841136400/.
  • Richardson, J. and Rackley, E. (2012). Introduction. In: Richardson, J. and Rackley, E. eds. Feminist Perspectives on Tort Law. Routledge, pp. 1-13. Available at: https://doi.org/10.4324/9780203122822.
  • Rackley, E. (2012). What a difference difference makes: Gendered harms and judicial diversity. In: Schultz, U. and Shaw, G. eds. Women in the Judiciary. Taylor & Francis, pp. 36-55. Available at: https://doi.org/10.4324/9780203720028.
    Taking the UK Ministry of Justice’s ongoing quest to ensure a more diverse judiciary as its starting point and backdrop, this paper establishes the House of Lords’ decision in Secretary of State for the Home Department v. K (FC); Fornah (FC) v. Secretary of State for the Home Department 2006 as a lens through which to explore the ‘difference’ of the woman judge and, in particular, the developing jurisprudence of Baroness Hale—the first (and only) female law lord in the UK. It argues that Baroness Hale’s candid recognition and articulation of the gendered nature of the experiences and violence in Fornah’s story reveals not only the difference difference (in whatever form) might make to understandings of the judge, judging and justice but also the importance of recognising the transformative potential of judicial diversity to create a space in which difference is celebrated and valued on its own terms, a place where difference can truly make a difference.
  • Rackley, E. (2012). What a difference difference makes: gendered harms and judicial diversity. In: Schultz, U. and Shaw, G. eds. Women in the Judiciary. Routledge. Available at: https://doi.org/10.4324/9780203720028.
    Taking the UK Ministry of Justice’s ongoing quest to ensure a more diverse judiciary as its starting point and backdrop, this paper establishes the House of Lords’ decision in Secretary of State for the Home Department v. K (FC); Fornah (FC) v. Secretary of State for the Home Department [2006] as a lens through which to explore the ‘difference’ of the woman judge and, in particular, the developing jurisprudence of Baroness Hale-the first (and only) female law lord in the UK. It argues that Baroness Hale’s candid recognition and articulation of the gendered nature of the experiences and violence in Fornah’s story reveals not only the difference difference (in whatever form) might make to understandings of the judge, judging and justice but also the importance of recognising the transformative potential of judicial diversity to create a space in which difference is celebrated and valued on its own terms, a place where difference can truly make a difference.
  • Hunter, R., McGlynn, C. and Rackley, E. (2010). Feminist Judgments: An Introduction. In: Hunter, R., McGlynn, C. and Rackley, E. eds. Feminist Judgments: From Theory to Practice. Oxford: Hart Publishing, pp. 3-29. Available at: https://www.bloomsburyprofessional.com/uk/feminist-judgments-9781847317278/.
  • Rackley, E. (2010). The Art and Craft of Writing Judgments: Notes on the Feminist Judgments Project. In: Hunter, R., McGlynn, C. and Rackley, E. eds. Feminist Judgments: From Theory to Practice. Oxford: Hart Publishing, pp. 44-56. Available at: https://www.bloomsburyprofessional.com/uk/feminist-judgments-9781847317278/.
  • Rackley, E. (2008). Judging Isabella: justice, care and relationships in Measure for Measure. In: Raffield, P. and Watt, G. eds. Shakespeare and the Law. Oxford: Hart Publishing, pp. 65-79. Available at: https://www.bloomsburyprofessional.com/uk/shakespeare-and-the-law-9781847314536/.
    This paper considers the story of Shakespeare?s Isabella ? both within and outwith the narrative of Measure for Measure ? as a lens through which to explore representations of the judge and judging. Taking criticisms of Isabella and her encounter with Angelo as its starting point and backdrop, it seeks to trouble the polarisation of justice and care ? law and mercy ? in traditional accounts of adjudication. Challenging the notion of the judge and judicial impartiality as necessarily unconnected to those she judges, the paper establishes Isabella as an icon ? a focus for contemplation and reflection. So viewed, Isabella and her relationships with Angelo, Claudio, Mariana and the Duke, provide a window onto alternative conceptions of autonomy, relationship, justice and care and, in so doing, orientate the mind and imagination toward the re-conceiving of previous insights on adjudication and the possibilities of diverse understandings of the judge, judging and adjudication.
  • Rackley, E. (2008). Edwards v Attorney‐General for Canada (1930). In: Cane, P. and Conaghan, J. eds. The New Oxford Companion to Law. Oxford University Press. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acref/9780199290543.001.0001.
  • Extreme Pornography (2008). In: Thinking About Almost Everything: New Ideas to Light up Minds. Profile Books, pp. 185-186.
  • Rackley, E. (2008). Gender Issues in Legal Education. In: Cane, P. and Conaghan, J. eds. The New Oxford Companion to Law. Oxford University Press. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acref/9780199290543.001.0001.
  • Rackley, E. (2008). Office for Judicial Complaints. In: Cane, P. and Conaghan, J. eds. The New Oxford Companion to Law. Oxford University Press. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acref/9780199290543.001.0001.
  • Rackley, E. (2008). Statutory duty, civil liability for breach of. In: Cane, P. and Conaghan, J. eds. The New Oxford Companion to Law. Oxford University Press. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acref/9780199290543.001.0001.
  • Rackley, E. (2008). Representation. In: Cane, P. and Conaghan, J. eds. The New Oxford Companion to Law. Oxford University Press. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acref/9780199290543.001.0001.

Edited book

  • Rackley, E. (2018). Women’s Legal Landmarks: Celebrating the History of Women and Law in the UK and Ireland. [Online]. Rackley, E. and Auchmuty, R. eds. Hart Publishing. Available at: https://www.bloomsburyprofessional.com/uk/womens-legal-landmarks-9781782259770/.
    Women's Legal Landmarks commemorates the centenary of women's admission in 1919 to the legal profession in the UK and Ireland by identifying key legal landmarks in women's legal history. Over 80 authors write about landmarks that represent a significant achievement or turning point in women's engagement with law and law reform. The landmarks cover a wide range of topics, including matrimonial property, the right to vote, prostitution, surrogacy and assisted reproduction, rape, domestic violence, FGM, equal pay, abortion, image-based sexual abuse, and the ordination of women bishops, as well as the life stories of women who were the first to undertake key legal roles and positions. Together the landmarks offer a scholarly intervention in the recovery of women's lost history and in the development of methodology of feminist legal history as well as a demonstration of women's agency and activism in the achievement of law reform and justice.
  • Rackley, E. (2017). Debating Judicial Appointments in an Age of Diversity. [Online]. Gee, G. and Rackley, E. eds. Routledge. Available at: https://www.routledge.com/Debating-Judicial-Appointments-in-an-Age-of-Diversity-1st-Edition/Gee-Rackley/p/book/9781138225350.
    What should be the primary goals of a judicial appointments system, and how much weight should be placed on diversity in particular? Why is achieving a diverse judiciary across the UK taking so long? Is it time for positive action? What role should the current judiciary play in the appointment of our future judges?
    There is broad agreement within the UK and other common law countries that diversity raises important questions for a legal system and its officials, but much less agreement about the full implications of recognising diversity as an important goal of the judicial appointments regime. Opinions differ, for example, on the methods, forms, timing and motivations for judicial diversity. To mark the tenth anniversary of the creation of the Judicial Appointments Commission (JAC) in England and Wales, this collection includes contributions from current and retired judges, civil servants, practitioners, current and former commissioners on the JAC and leading academics from Australia, Canada, South Africa and across the UK. Together they provide timely and authoritative insights into past, current and future debates on the search for diversity in judicial appointments.
    Topics discussed include the role and responsibility of independent appointment bodies; assessments of the JAC’s first ten years; appointments to the UK Supreme Court; the pace of change; definitions of ‘merit’ and ‘diversity’; mandatory retirement ages; the use of ceiling quotas; and the appropriate role of judges and politicians in the appointments process.
  • Gee, G. and Rackley, E. (2017). Debating Judicial Appointments in an Age of Diversity. [Online]. Gee, G. and Rackley, E. eds. Taylor & Francis. Available at: https://doi.org/10.4324/9781315400068.
    What should be the primary goals of a judicial appointments system, and how much weight should be placed on diversity in particular? Why is achieving a diverse judiciary across the UK taking so long? Is it time for positive action? What role should the current judiciary play in the appointment of our future judges? There is broad agreement within the UK and other common law countries that diversity raises important questions for a legal system and its officials, but much less agreement about the full implications of recognising diversity as an important goal of the judicial appointments regime. Opinions differ, for example, on the methods, forms, timing and motivations for judicial diversity. To mark the tenth anniversary of the creation of the Judicial Appointments Commission (JAC) in England and Wales, this collection includes contributions from current and retired judges, civil servants, practitioners, current and former commissioners on the JAC and leading academics from Australia, Canada, South Africa and across the UK. Together they provide timely and authoritative insights into past, current and future debates on the search for diversity in judicial appointments. Topics discussed include the role and responsibility of independent appointment bodies; assessments of the JAC's first ten years; appointments to the UK Supreme Court; the pace of change; definitions of 'merit' and 'diversity'; mandatory retirement ages; the use of ceiling quotas; and the appropriate role of judges and politicians in the appointments process.
  • Richardson, C. and Rackley, E. (2012). Feminist Perspectives on Tort Law. [Online]. Richardson, J. and Rackley, E. eds. Routledge. Available at: https://www.wildy.com/isbn/9780415731898/feminist-perspectives-on-tort-law-paperback-hardback-in-2012-routledge.
    Feminist Perspectives on Tort Law brings together acknowledged experts in these two areas to pursue a distinctly feminist approach to the major areas of tort law. The first half of the book addesses negligence - including an examination of feminist issues in relation to the duty of care, procreative injuries and loss, police negligence, psychiatric harm, the standard of care and product liability. The second half of the book takes up the nominate torts: the personal torts - including the recently expanding area of privacy and torts in relation to sexual wrong and rape - and land torts - including environmental issues and gender. The final chapter of the volume considers the way in which gender affects the courts’ calculation of damages to the detriment of women. International in its scope, and accessibly written, Feminist Perspectives on Tort Law will be required reading for students, scholars and practitioners.
  • Hunter, R. and Rackley, E. (2010). Feminist Judgments: From Theory to Practice. Hunter, R., McGlynn, C. and Rackley, E. eds. Oxford: Hart Publishing.

Monograph

  • Rackley, E. and Auchmuty, R. (2018). Women’s Legal Landmarks: Celebrating Feminist Legal History. University of Reading and University of Kent.

Forthcoming

  • Rackley, E. and Auchmuty, R. (2020). The Case for Feminist Legal History. Oxford Journal of Legal Studies [Online]. Available at: https://academic.oup.com/ojls.
    While we may be witnessing a highpoint of interest in the lives of early women lawyers, and women’s legal history generally, feminist legal history remains largely undeveloped in the UK. Drawing on examples of women’s representation in and engagement with law and law reform in the UK and Ireland, this article delineates the method, scope and purpose of feminist legal history. It begins by exploring the place of women in traditional accounts of legal history, before going on to consider the methodological and substantive goals of feminist legal history. We argue that feminist legal history is a political project, requiring its authors to commit not only to uncovering untold stories but to challenging and revising dominant historical narratives. We conclude with a call for scholars to take up the insights and methods of feminist legal history as a means of acknowledging and celebrating the agency of those involved in past and ongoing struggles for justice and equality.
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