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Debt’s Dominion: A History of Bankruptcy Law in America, an excerpt from a new book by Prof. David A. Skeel, Jr.

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Highlights from the Reunion of Honorary Fellows

“Historically what made a difference was the New Deal. Lawyers who worked in that effort and then returned to private practice maintained that approach to fixing problems. A sea change occurred with Martin Luther King and the civil rights movement and Sargent Shriver’s War on Poverty. Today the ABA has a pro bono requirement that makes public service an ethical obligation of lawyers.”
“I’m honored to be among these people [Fellow Roundtable participants]. I see myself as a virus in the law firm where I work. I try to corrupt others with the virus. Take on one public interest case at a time.”

“We would have been far worse off had we not had the public interest law movement of the last 35 years. We should celebrate the creation of this movement.”

“John F. Kennedy, Martin Luther King, Bobby Kennedy – today we don’t have anyone who approximates these men. Had it not been for the Vietnam War I think Johnson would have been re-elected because of his War on Poverty…today lawyers have to realize their limits. The only way we, as public lawyers, are going to be successful is if society changes. The movements come from the streets.”

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