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Ipse Dixit

A Podcast on Legal Scholarship

Ipse Dixit is a podcast on legal scholarship. Each episode of Ipse Dixit features a different guest discussing their scholarship. The podcast also features several special series."From the Archives" consists historical r... More
Latest Episode
2019-4-24

Amy Werbel on Anthony Comstock and Obscenity Law

Season 1, Ep. 224

In this episode, Amy Werbel, Associate Professor of Art History at the Fashion Institute of Technology, discusses her recent book "Lust on Trial: Censorship and the Rise of American Obscenity in the Age of Anthony Comstock," which is published by Columbia University Press. Werbel begins by explaining who Anthony Comstock was and why he played such an important role in creating and enforcing obscenity law in the Gilded Age United States. She describes how social and technological change prompted demands for more and stronger obscenity laws, which Comstock came to exemplify. And she discusses how his rigid enforcement of his highly personal and idiosyncratic standards for obscenity soon brought him out of step with both his patrons and a changing society. Werbel is on Twitter at @awerbel.

2019-4-24

Amy Werbel on Anthony Comstock and Obscenity Law

Season 1, Ep. 224

In this episode, Amy Werbel, Associate Professor of Art History at the Fashion Institute of Technology, discusses her recent book "Lust on Trial: Censorship and the Rise of American Obscenity in the Age of Anthony Comstock," which is published by Columbia University Press. Werbel begins by explaining who Anthony Comstock was and why he played such an important role in creating and enforcing obscenity law in the Gilded Age United States. She describes how social and technological change prompted demands for more and stronger obscenity laws, which Comstock came to exemplify. And she discusses how his rigid enforcement of his highly personal and idiosyncratic standards for obscenity soon brought him out of step with both his patrons and a changing society. Werbel is on Twitter at @awerbel.

2019-4-22

Shoshana Weissmann on Occupational Licensing

Season 1, Ep. 223

In this episode, Shoshana Weissmann, Digital Media Manager and Fellow at the R Street Institute, discusses her work on occupational licensing reform. She explains what occupational licensing is, when it is legitimate, and when it isn't. She observes that occupational licensing often prevents people from engaging in productive economic activity for no good reason. She discusses different areas in which occupational licensing has made it harder for people to legitimate and valuable services. And she reflects on efforts to reform occupational licensing. Weissmann is on Twitter at @senatorshoshana.

2019-4-21

From the Archives 79: Justice Holmes' Decisions (1981)

Season 1, Ep. 222

In 1981, Caedmon released this LP of Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes's opinions, as read by E.G. Marshall, with commentary by Louis Nizer. The script was edited by William R. Van Gemert. The album was directed by Linda Morgenstern and produced by Daniel A. Wolfert.

The album ends with an audio recording of Justice Holmes, made on the occasion of his 90th birthday, for a special radio program.

Here is the tracklist:

A1 Commonwealth V. Perry (1889) 139 Mass. 198 (public Nuisance, Piggery) 3:15

A2 Vegelahn V. Guntner (1896) 167 Mass. 92 (right Of Peaceful Picketing) 9:56

A3 Lochner V. New York (1905) 198 U.S. 45 ( Social Legislation In Ny Re Hours Of Work For Bakery Workers ) 5:49

A4 Hammer V. Dagenhart (1918) 247 U.S. 251 (Child Labor Case) 7:42

B1 Abrams V. U.S. (1919) 250 U.S. 616 (freedom Of Speech) 5:32

B2 Missouri V. Holland (1920) 252 U.S. 416 ( Regulation Of Wildlife) 8:42

B3 Olmstead V. U.S. (1928) 177 U.S. 438 ((Wire-tapping) 4:15

B4 U.S. V. Schwimmer (199) 279 U.S. 644 ( Denial Of Citizenship) 5:31

B5 Justice Holmes delivers his 90th birthday speech ( in response to high praise given by many prominent figures during special radio program) 1:23


2019-4-20

Jessica Clarke on Nonbinary Gender Identity

Season 1, Ep. 221

In this episode, Jessica Clarke, Professor of Law at Vanderbilt University Law School, discusses her article, "They, Them, and Theirs," which was published in the Harvard Law Review. Clarke begins by defining nonbinary gender identity and describing how nonbinary identity fits into modern civil rights doctrines. She details how nonbinary legal rights advocacy intersects with transgender and feminist legal arguments. She explains how a contextual, case-by-case approach can address many of the concerns regarding legal recognition of nonbinary identities, and goes over various regulatory schemes for nonbinary gender rights and their shortcomings. Clarke concludes by discussing a recent case involving a nonbinary intersex plaintiff and their lawsuit regarding gender markers on passports issued by the State Department, Zzyym v. Pompeo. Clarke is on Twitter at @clarkeja.


This episode was hosted by Luce Nguyen, a student at Oberlin College and the co-founder of the Oberlin Policy Research Institute, an undergraduate public policy organization based at Oberlin College. Nguyen is on Twitter at @NguyenLuce

2019-4-20

Bruce Boyden on the Melodramatic Origins of the Ordinary Observer

Season 1, Ep. 220

In this episode, Bruce Boyden, Associate Professor of Law at Marquette University Law School, discusses his article "Daly v. Palmer, or the Melodramatic Origins of the Ordinary Observer," which was published in the Syracuse Law Review. Boyden's article was part of the "Forgotten Intellectual Property" symposium sponsored by Syracuse Law School. He observes that the Daly v. Palmer case provided the standard for copyright law's "ordinary observer" test for infringement for quite some time, until it was supplanted by Arnstein v. Porter. He argues that understanding Daly v. Palmer in historical context can help us better understand the development of copyright doctrine. Boyden is on Twitter at @BruceBoyden.

2019-4-19

From the Archives 78: Foster Sylvers, Misdemeanor (1973)

Season 1, Ep. 219

Foster Emerson Sylvers (1962-) is an American singer-songwriter. He is best known for his hit single "Misdemeanor," which was written by his brother Leon Sylvers III, and which reached #7 on Billboard's R&B charts. He has recorded 5 albums, none of which achieved the success of his debut.

In 1994, Sylvers was convicted of a sex offense and incarcerated. He is currently a registered person.

Here are the lyrics of Misdemeanor:

Love tracks, setbacks
All can come back

Pick up on the fact
Take it in stride
Love and devotion
Don't confide
It's the tracks of lost emotion
Let it glide
It's gonna subside
She stole my heart
Loved her from the start

Whatcha gonna do
When I think I'm in love
And I catch my girl doin' me wrong
Too bad
It's just enough
To slip back in the start
Like when you get your first ticket
For illegal parking

But don't you know
It's no big deal
Take it slow
She's not for real
Let it go
Fine you know
Until she stole my heart
She stole his heart

But it's just a misdemeanor
You gotta get-a over it
Oh, he loved her from the start

Love tracks, setbacks
All can come back

Pick up on the fact
Take it in stride
Love and devotion
Don't confide
It's the tracks of lost emotion
Let it glide
It's gonna subside
She stole my heart
Oh, she stole his heart

But it's just a misdemeanor
You gotta get-a over it
Oh, he loved her from the start

Whatcha gonna do
When I get to the goal
And my friends aren't tellin' me
When I'm playin' the fool

Oh, he loved her from the start
You gotta get over it
Love tracks, set backs
All can come back
Oh, she stole his heart
2019-4-18

Claudia Haupt on Professional Speech

Season 1, Ep. 218

In this episode, Claudia Haupt, Associate Professor of Law and Political Science at Northeastern University, discusses her article, "Professional Speech," in the Yale Law Journal and her two successive articles, "Professional Speech and the Content-Neutrality Trap" and "The Limits of Professional Speech" published in the Yale Law Journal Forum. Haupt begins by stating the contours of professional speech as the dissemination of the common knowledge of a knowledge community in the learned professions. She discusses the role of professionals in an asymmetrical professional-client relationship within the protections of the First Amendment, within their role as contributor to a well-informed democratic polity, and within the regulatory environment established by states. She discusses recent circuit and Supreme Court decisions on professional speech in regards to sexual orientation change efforts (SOCE), crisis pregnancy centers, and restraints established by states to regulate professional speech, laying out the details of each case and discussing when the "First Amendment sword" should be used to protect professional speech. Haupt concludes by providing her insights as to how the framework of professional speech she advances should be taken by regulators, courts, and the general public. Haupt is on Twitter at @CEHaupt.


This episode was hosted by Luce Nguyen, a student at Oberlin College and the co-founder of the Oberlin Policy Research Institute, an undergraduate public policy organization based at Oberlin College. Nguyen is on Twitter at @NguyenLuce.