Robert A. Ferguson

George Edward Woodberry Professor Emeritus in Law, Literature, and Criticism

Robert A. Ferguson

Robert
A.
Ferguson
George Edward Woodberry Professor Emeritus in Law, Literature, and Criticism

Robert A. Ferguson, the George Edward Woodberry Professor Emeritus in Law, Literature, and Criticism, joined the Columbia faculty in 1989. Prior to that, he served on the faculty at the University of Chicago from 1978 to 1989, and as the school’s Andrew W. Mellon Professor in the Humanities from 1987 to 1989. Ferguson has also taught at Harvard, Princeton, Yale, and Stanford.

His academic honors and prizes include a Guggenheim Fellowship (1987 to 1988), a fellowship to the National Humanities Center (1994 to 1995), and the Willard Hurst Award for Legal History from the Law and Society Association. Ferguson has also received distinguished teaching awards from the University of Chicago (1982), Columbia University (1998), and Columbia Law School (2003).

Ferguson is the author of numerous books and articles in American literature, legal history, and the relationship of law and legal institutions to the art of writing. His books include Alone in America: The Stories That Matter (Harvard University Press, 2013), Inferno: An Anatomy of American Punishment (Harvard University Press, 2014), and Practice Extended: Beyond Law and Literature (Columbia University Press, 2016). His articles include “The Forgotten Publius: John Jay and the Aesthetics of Ratification” in Early American Literature (1999), “The Commonalities of Common Sense,” in the William and Mary Quarterly (2000), and “The Dialectic of Liberty in Anglo-American Culture,” in Modern Intellectual History (2004).

Ferguson graduated from Harvard University with an A.B. in 1964, a J.D. in 1968, and a Ph.D. in 1974.

Areas of Expertise

Law and Literature

Courses
Connections of Law and Literature
S. Punishment
S. Punishment: Theory and Practice
S. The High-Profile Trial: Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow

Columbia Law School

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