Rebecca Tushnet joins Harvard Law faculty as Professor of First Amendment Law

Rebecca Tushnet

Credit: Georgetown University Law Center

Rebecca Tushnet, a leading First Amendment scholar, will join the faculty of Harvard Law School as the inaugural Frank Stanton Professor of First Amendment Law.

Tushnet is a professor of law at Georgetown University Law Center, where she has taught since 2004. Her work currently focuses on copyright, trademark, and false advertising law and their relationship to the First Amendment.

“Rebecca Tushnet’s creative scholarship addresses how law shapes what can be said and what ideas and art can be expressed in a world increasingly raising conflict between intellectual property, mass media, and consumer protection,” said Martha Minow, the Morgan and Helen Chu Dean and Professor of Law at HLS. “From her efforts to protect fan fiction to her treatments of false advertising and trade-marks, she pursues First Amendment values with attention to pop cultural trends, social science, and commercial regulations.  We are so thrilled to welcome her at HLS!”

Tushnet’s publications include “Registering Disagreement: Registration in Modern American Trademark Law” (Harvard L. Rev. 2017); “Worth a Thousand Words: The Images of Copyright Law” (Harvard L. Rev. 2012); and “Copy This Essay: How Fair Use Doctrine Harms Free Speech and How Copying Serves It” (Yale L.J. 2004).  With Eric Goldman, she publishes a casebook on advertising and marketing law, and has a forthcoming book on images in intellectual property law.  Her blog, at tushnet.blogspot.com, has been on the ABA’s Blawg 100 list of top legal blogs for the past three years.  Tushnet helped found the Organization for Transformative Works, a nonprofit dedicated to supporting and promoting fanworks, and currently volunteers on its legal committee. She received Public Knowledge’s IP3 Award for Intellectual Property in 2015.  She is also an expert on the law of engagement rings.

“I’m thrilled to join the faculty, to get involved with the Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society, and to have the opportunity to work with the deeply engaged students here,” said Tushnet.

After clerking for Chief Judge Edward R. Becker of the Third Circuit and Associate Justice David H. Souter ’66 on the U.S. Supreme Court, she practiced intellectual property law at Debevoise & Plimpton before beginning teaching at the New York University School of Law, then moving to Georgetown. She graduated from Harvard University in 1995 and from Yale Law School in 1998. At Yale, Tushnet served as an articles editor for the Yale Law Journal and as an editor of the Yale Journal of Law and Feminism.