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A difficult road ahead for asylum rights advocacy

A commentary on Matter of A-B and family membership as a protected ground

by Philip Kretsedemas UMass-Boston, Sociology

          Just a few weeks ago, on June 11, Attorney General Jeff Sessions released Matter of A-B, an opinion that dramatically curtails asylum protections for survivors of domestic violence, and for many other people who have been persecuted by non-state actors. Matter of A-B has been described, and for good reason, as ushering a return to the dark ages of U.S. asylum law, especially for gender asylum advocacy.

           However, of the many concerns that have been raised about Matter of A-B, there has been no mention made of the ambiguous position it has taken on family membership as a protected ground, and how this protected ground applies to the kinds of asylum claims it is seeking to restrict. This issue is important because the opinion begins by defining domestic and gang violence survivors as victims of “private crime,” and then goes on to deliberate on wh…

A Summer Recap of Recent Popular Articles: “See What Your Colleagues are Reading in LSR.”

For some of us, in theory anyway, the summer months bring more time for reading and reflection. So, in between summer novels, you might wish to take a look at this selection of outstanding and recent articles published in the Law and Society Review.

The special issue is posted on the journal’s home page: “See What Your Colleagues are Reading in LSR.” We encourage you to take a look at this diverse and engaging collection of law and society scholarship. 
The range of issues covered is wonderful and collected from across our issues—migrant workers’ right, immigration processes and sanctions, rights coalition building, reexaminations of procedural justice claims, counter-terrorism work, and legal cynicism and situational trust.  Remember, if you see something you wish to comment on or engage with, the Law and Society Review Blog is just the place to do that.
Best,
Margot Young
Co-Editor
UBC Law

Thank You to our 2017 Reviewers

This journal would not exist without the many reviewers that contribute their time and energy to providing our authors with excellent feedback. Many thanks the following people who provided reviews in 2017.
Abel, Richard. Abraham, David Abrams, Jamie R.Abrego, LeisyAdams, TraceyAddler, LibbyAdediran, AtinukeAguiar-Aguilar, AzuleAhmed Zaki, HindAlbonetti, CelestaAli, ShahlaAliverti, AnaAlygaon Darr, OrnaAmaral-Garcia, SofiaAmorim, MarianayAnderson, Irina Anderson, KristinAnderson, Leslie E.Anleu, Sharyn RoachAriel, BarakAnleu, Sharyn RoachArmaly, MilesArmenta, AmadaArthur, RaymondArthurs, HarryArtis, Julie E.Asad, AsadAsh, ElliottAshford, JoseAshok, KrithikaAspinwall, MarkAtwell, Mary W.Augustine-Adams, KifAugustyn, MeganAviram, HadarAyano, MekonnenBaar, CarlBailey, Michael A.Baird, VanessaBaker, David V.Baker, ThomasBakiner, OnurBall, JeremyBallucci, DaleBarak, Gregg Barker, VanessaBarlow, AngelaBartels, BrandonBattalora, JacquelineBaum, LawrenceBaumgartner, FrankBaye, TemesgenBaz…

Europeanization or National Specificity? Legal Approaches to Sexual Harassment in France, 2002–2012

By Abigail Saguy, UCLA

Sexual harassment represents a massive problem for working women worldwide. A recent social media campaign has brought increased awareness to this fact. In late 2017—after three-dozen women accused Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein of sexual harassment, assault, or rape—millions of women posted “Me Too” on Twitter, Snapchat, Facebook, and other social media platforms. Taking inspiration from African American activist Tarana Burke—who, in 2007, started an offline “Me Too” campaign to let sex abuse survivors know that they were not alone—actress Alyssa Milano launched this online Me Too campaign to shift the focus from Weinstein to victims. She hoped this would “give people a sense of the magnitude of the problem.”[1] While some posted simply, “Me Too,” others provided wrenching detail about abuse they had sometimes never before shared publicly. In France, a similar social media campaign flourished, under the hashtag “balance ton porc,” loosely translated as “sq…

A Response to Tyler

By Kitty Calavita and Valerie Jenness, University of California, Irvine

We appreciate Tom Tyler’s close read of our article, “It Depends on the Outcome’: Prisoners, Grievances, and Perceptions of Justice,” and his pinpointing of issues of concern to him. We would like to respond here to just a few points.

Most importantly, it is a mischaracterization to say, as Tyler does, that we argue “that perceptions of procedural justice do not matter in the prison context.” As we say in the abstract (“These findings do not refute the importance of procedural justice” [p. 41]) and throughout the paper (e.g., “Nor do we argue that procedural justice is not important to these prisoners” [p. 43]), procedural justice is important. It matters, both as a moral principle and as a concrete reality for people involuntarily interacting with the long arm of the state, whether in a police stop or in a prison cell. The prisoners we interviewed clearly want to be treated fairly and with respect; nevertheless,…