Carol Sanger

Barbara Aronstein Black Professor of Law

Carol Sanger

Barbara Aronstein Black Professor of Law

Carol Sanger is the Barbara Aronstein Black Professor of Law at Columbia Law School. She teaches courses on contracts, family law, and others focusing on reproduction, the legal profession, and law and gender.

Her recent scholarship, including her 2017 book, About Abortion: Terminating Pregnancy in the 21st Century, is centered on the regulation of abortion, the regulation of maternal conduct, surrogacy, and the law's relation to culture. In addition to her numerous law journal publications, Sanger has edited Cases and Materials on Contracts, (with Garvin, Cohen, and Brooks), 2013 (8th edition).

Before joining the Law School faculty in 1996, Sanger taught at the University of Oregon from 1979 to 1981 and the Santa Clara University Law School from 1985 to 1994. Additionally, she served as a visiting scholar at the Institute for Research on Women and Gender at Stanford University from 1990 to 1991; visiting professor at Stanford Law School from 1991 to 1992; visiting professor at Columbia from 1994 to 1996; and a commercial law practitioner in San Francisco from 1976 to 1979.

During her tenure at Columbia, Sanger has spent several semesters as a Visiting Fellow and Visiting Professor of Law at the University of Oxford, as well as one year as a fellow in the Program on Law and Public Affairs at Princeton University from 2003 to 2004. Sanger received the Columbia University Presidential Award for Excellence in Teaching in 2001, and the 2007 Law School graduating class awarded Sanger the Willis L.M. Reese Teaching Prize for Excellence in Teaching.

In 2011, the Center for Reproductive Rights honored her with an Innovations in Scholarship Award, and, in 2013, she received the Green Bag Award for Exemplary Legal Writing for the article, “‘The Birth of Death’: Stillborn Birth Certificates and the Problem for Law,” 100 California Law Review 269, 2012.

Sanger has a J.D. from the University of Michigan and a B.A. from Wellesley College.

  • J.D., University of Michigan, 1976
  • B.A., Wellesley College, 1970
Areas of Expertise
  • Contracts
  • Family law
  • Abortion law
  • About Abortion: Terminating Pregnancy in 21st Century America, Harvard University Press, 2017
  • “Contracting for Motherhood: Post-adoption Visitation Agreements,” Bodies and Borders: Negotiating Motherhood in the 21st Century, Columbia University Press, 2016
  • Cases and Materials on Contracts, (with Cohen, Brooks, and Garvin), 2013, (8th edition)
  • “Acquiring Children Contractually: Relational Contracts at Work at Home,” Stewart Macaulay and Contract Scholarship (Jean Braucher, John Kidwell and William C Whitford, eds.), Hart Publishing, 2013
  • “Bargaining for Motherhood: Postadoption Visitation Agreements,” Hofstra Law Review 41:2, 2013
  • “About Abortion: The Complications of the Category,” Arizona Law Review 54:4, 2013
  • “‘The Birth of Death’: Stillborn Birth Certificates and the Problem for Law,” 100 California Law Review 269, 2012
  • “Integrating Humanities into Family Law and the Problem with Truths Universally Acknowledged,” 3 California Law Review Circuit, 2012
  • “Decisional Dignity: Teenage Abortion, Bypass Hearings, and the Misuse of Law,” 18 Columbia Journal of Gender and Law 409, 2009
  • “Seeing and Believing: Mandatory Ultrasound and the Path to a Protected Choice,” 56 UCLA Law Review 351, 2008
  • “Developing Markets in Baby-Making: In the Matter of Baby M,” 29 Harvard J. Law & Gender, 2007
  • Family Law Stories, Foundation Press, 2007
  • Gender and Rights, (with Deborah Rhode, eds.), The International Library of Essays in Law and Legal Theory, Second Series (Ashgate/Dartmouth), 2005

View an extended list of Carol Sanger's publications

Download Full C.V.
American Contract Law
Introduction to American Law
S. Abortion: Law in Context

Columbia Law School

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