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Pandemic Pressures on Faculty

Academics are incredibly privileged. They are paid relatively well to read, think, write, teach, learn, and provide service to their institutions and communities. Yet law professors, like every other segment of society, have struggled during the pandemic. The negative effects of COVID, which go far beyond health consequences, are not distributed equally either within or outside of legal education. Those faculty who were in vulnerable positions before March 2020 have borne the brunt of these difficulties during the pandemic. In the hierarchical structure of legal academia—one that prioritizes scholarship over service, the Socratic method above skills-based learning, and normative doctrinal scholarship more than identity-based research—underrepresented and marginalized populations have faced heightened challenges due to COVID.