Faculty Publications

Title

No right to judge: Feminism and the judiciary in Third Republic France

Document Type

Article

Journal/Book/Conference Title

French Historical Studies

Volume

31

Issue

4

Abstract

Women in France were admitted to the legal profession by law in 1900, but they were prohibited from ascending to the judiciary until 1946. Once they entered the profession, feminist lawyers demanded "the right to judge" and challenged gender discrimination in employment. They found allies among juvenile justice reformers who advocated the utility of placing women on the bench of the new youth courts created by the law of July 22, 1912. This article demonstrates that the legislative efforts to secure women's judicial eligibility were thwarted by the perception of women's social and cultural inferiority and by the fact of their legal inequality. Women's protest of their unequal treatment formed an inherent claim to equal citizenship and threatened to disrupt the traditional power relations between the sexes. Copyright 2008 by Society for French Historical Studies.

Original Publication Date

12-1-2008

DOI of published version

10.1215/00161071-2008-008

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