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Joanna Grisinger

Associate Professor of Instruction | Director of Legal Studies

J.D., The University of Chicago; Ph.D., The University of Chicago
Curriculum Vitae

Joanna Grisinger is Associate Professor of Instruction at the Center for Legal Studies at Northwestern University, where she teaches a variety of undergraduate courses including Legal and Constitutional History of the United States, Constitutional Law, Gender and the Law, Law and Society, and Law & the Civil Rights Movement. She received her J.D. and Ph.D. in History from the University of Chicago; her research focuses on the modern administrative state in twentieth-century U.S. legal and political history. Her first book, The Unwieldy American State: Administrative Politics Since the New Deal (Cambridge University Press, 2012), offers a political history of administrative law reform. Her current research explores public interest participation in administrative decision making; she is currently working on a book manuscript that examines airline regulation as a site for mobilization around issues of race and apartheid, disability, consumer rights, and the environment.

Prof. Grisinger co-edits (with Deborah Dinner) the Legal History section of, and is the advisory editor on Law and Criminology for the American National Biography Online. She is chair of the ASLH Standing Committee on the Annual Meeting and a past member of the American Society for Legal History’s board of directors. She is a co-founder (with Kimberly Welch, Kathryn Schumaker, and Logan Sawyer) of the Law & History Collaborative Research Network (established 2013) within the Law and Society Association.

Courses Taught

  • Legal_St 101 Law & the Civil Rights Movement
  • Legal_St/Hist 318-1,2 Legal and Constitutional History of the United States – to 1850/since 1850
  • Legal St/Hist 320 The Fourteenth Amendment (co-taught with Prof. Kate Masur)
  • Legal_St/Poli_Sci 332/333 Constitutional Law I & II
  • Legal_St 340 Gender and the Law
  • Legal_St 376 Legal History of the Colonies and Constitution
  • Legal_St 398-1,2 Advanced Research Seminar

Selected Publications