Photo: Vinay Harpalani

Vinay Harpalani

      Associate Professor of Law

      Education

      • J.D., New York University (2009)
      • Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania (2005)
      • M.Be, University of Pennsylvania (2004)
      • M.S.Ed., University of Pennsylvania (1999)
      • B.A., University of Delaware (1997)
      • H.B.A., University of Delaware (1996)
      • Member of the New York and U.S. Supreme Court Bars

      Contact Information

       Ph.: 505-277-5653
       Office: 2526
       

      Profile

      Vinay Harpalani teaches courses in constitutional law, civil rights, civil procedure, and employment discrimination. Professor Harpalani was the recipient of the 2017 Derrick A. Bell, Jr. Award from the Association of American Law Schools Section on Minority Groups; and the 2016 Junior Teaching Faculty Award from the Society of American Law Teachers. His scholarship focuses on the intersections between race, education, and law, as he explores the nuances of racial diversity and identity from various disciplinary perspectives. His writings have covered topics such as affirmative action in university admissions, racial ambiguity, skin color discrimination, and the psychological development of racial identity. Professor Harpalani’s 2012 law review article, “Diversity Within Racial Groups and the Constitutionality of Race-Conscious Admissions”, which was published in the University of Pennsylvania Journal of Constitutional Law, was cited in eight U.S. Supreme Court amicus briefs in Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin I and II, and was quoted (with citation omitted) in Justice Samuel Alito’s dissent in Fisher II. His other articles have appeared or will appear in the Maryland Law Review, University of Pennsylvania Law Review Online, Seton Hall Law Review, NYU Annual Survey of Law, Duke Journal of Constitutional Law and Public Policy, and other journals. Several of these articles have also been cited in legal briefs or opinions at the U.S. Supreme Court, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, and the New York Court of Appeals.

      Courses

      • Constitutional Law I
      • Civil Procedure I
      • Employment Discrimination
      • Civil Rights

      Publications

      Book Chapters

      Gifted with a Second-Sight”: Professor Derrick Bell the Teacher, Covenant Keeper: Derrick Bell’s Enduring Education Legacy (Gloria J. Ladson-Billings & William F. Tate eds.) (2016).
      Available at: Your Library

      What Does “Acting White” Actually Mean?: Racial Identity, Adolescent Development, and Academic Achievement among Black Youth, Minority Status, Oppositional Culture, and Schooling (John U. Ogbu ed.) (co-authored with Margaret Beale Spencer) (2008).
      Available at: UNM Libraries

      Colorism Embodied: Skin Tone and Psychosocial Well-Being in Adolescence, Developmental Perspectives on Embodiment and Consciousness (Willis F. Overton et al. eds.) (co-authored with Suzanne G. Fegley et al.) (2008).
      Available at: Your Library

      Nature, Nurture, and the Question of How?: A Phenomenological Variant of Ecological Systems Theory (PVEST), Nature and Nurture: The Complex Interplay of Genetic and Environmental Influences on Human Behavior and Development (Cynthia García Coll et al. eds.) (co-authored with Margaret Beale Spencer) (2004).
      Available at: UNM HSLIC

      Articles

      Racial Triangulation, Interest-Convergence, and the Double-Consciousness of Asian Americans, GA. ST. U. L. REV. (Forthcoming).
      Available at: SSRN

      "Trumping" Affirmative Action, 66 VILL. L. REV. TOLLE LEGE (Forthcoming 2020).
      Available at: SSRN

      Civil Rights Law in Living Color, 79(4) MD. L. REV. 881 (2020).
      Available at: UNM-DR

      Race-Conscious Admissions, Diversity, and Academic Freedom, 22 UNIV. PENN. J. CONST. L. ONLINE 101 (2019).
      Available at: UNM-DR

      “Safe Spaces” and the Educational Benefits of Diversity, 13 DUKE J. CONST. L. & PUB. POL'Y 117 (2017).
      Available at: SSRN

      Counterstereotypic Identity Among High-Achieving Black Students, 14(1) PERSPECTIVES URB. EDUC. 1 (2017).
      Available at: SSRN

      Victory is Defeat: The Ironic Consequence of Justice Scalia’s Death for Fisher v. University of Texas, 164 UNIV. PENN. L. REV. ONLINE 155 (2016).
      Available at: SSRN

      Defending the Constitutionality of Race-Conscious University Admissions, 9 ADVANCE: J. of ACS ISSUE BRIEFS 73 (October 2015).
      Available at: SSRN

      Narrowly Tailored but Broadly Compelling: Defending Race-Conscious Admissions After Fisher, 45 SETON HALL L. REV. 761 (2015).
      Available at: SSRN

      To Be White, Black, or Brown? South Asian Americans and the Race-Color Distinction, 14 WASH. UNIV. GLOBAL STUD. L. REV. 609 (2015).
      Available at: SSRN

      The Double-Consciousness of Race-Consciousness and the Bermuda Triangle of UniversityAdmissions, 17 UNIV.  PENN. J. CONST. L. 821 (2015).
      Available at: SSRN

      DesiCrit: Theorizing the Racial Ambiguity of South Asian Americans, 69 N.Y.U. ANN. SURV. AM. L. 77 (2013).
      Available at: SSRN

      Fisher’s Fishing Expedition,15 UNIV. of PENN. J. CONST. L HEIGHTENED SCRUTINY 57 (2013).
      Available at: SSRN

      From Roach Powder to Radical Humanism: Professor Derrick Bell’s “Critical” Constitutional Pedagogy, 36 SEATTLE UNIV. L. REV. xxiii (2013).
      Available at: SSRN

      Diversity Within Racial Groups and the Constitutionality of Race-Conscious Admissions, 15 UNIV. PENN. J. CONST. L. 463 (2012).
      Available at: SSRN

      Ambiguity, Ambivalence, and Awakening: A South Asian Becoming “Critically” Aware of Race in America, 11 BERKELEY J. AFR.-AM. L. & POL'Y 71 (2009).
      Available at: SSRN

      What Does “Acting White” Really Mean?: Racial Identity Formation and Academic Achievement among Black Youth, 1(1) PERSPECTIVES URB. EDUC. 1 (2002).
      Available at: SSRN

      Bar & Trade Publications

      'Preservative of All Other Rights': Voting and Social Justice in the Post-Trump Era, CIVIL RIGHTS INSIDER (Winter 2021).
      Available at: UNM-DR

      Popular Press

      Racial Stereotypes, Respectability Politics, and Running for President: Examining Andrew Yang's and Barack Obama's Presidential Bids, RACE & L. PROFESSOR BLOG (June 14, 2020).
      Available at: UNM-DR

      Kamala Harris and the Complexity of Racial Identity Politics, RACE & L. PROFESSOR BLOG (December 29, 2019).
      Available at: UNM-DR

      Michael Vick, Robert Byrd, and the Case for Redemption, RACE & L. PROFESSOR BLOG (December 20, 2019).
      Available at: UNM-DR

      The Supreme Court and the Future of Affirmative Action, ISCOTUS NOW (October 24, 2019).
      Available at: ISCOTUSnow

      “Serving Two Masters” Revisited: Derrick Bell, Joe Biden, and the Paradox of Busing, RACE & L. PROFESSOR BLOG (July 4, 2019).
      Available at: Race and the Law Prof Blog

      Dreams From My Father, Dreams From My Mother: Tracing the Multiple Identities of Barack Obama and Kamala Harris, RACE & L. PROFESSOR BLOG (Feb. 23, 2019).
      Available at: Race and the Law Prof Blog

      Claiming the South--and All of Its History, RACE & L. PROFESSOR BLOG (Aug. 16, 2017).
      Available at: Race and the Law Prof Blog

      Why I am not “Asian” and Other Reflections on Asian American Identities, RACE & L. PROFESSOR BLOG (July 19, 2017).
      Available at: Race and the Law Prof Blog

      A Colorable Claim of Discrimination, RACE & L. PROFESSOR BLOG (Jan. 16, 2017).
      Available at: Race and the Law Prof Blog

      The Fishing Expedition is Over: Victory for Affirmative Action in Fisher v. Texas!, HIGHER EDUCATION L. BLOG (June 23, 2016).
      Available at: HigherEducationLaw Blog (Cross-posted on five other blogs).

      Theorizing Racial Ambiguity, RACE & L. PROFESSOR BLOG (Jan. 4, 2016).
      Available at: Race and the Law Professor Blog

      Still a Fishing Expedition: Will there be a Fisher III?, ISCOTUS NOW  (Dec. 14, 2015).
      Available at: iSCOTUSnow

      Climbing on the Backs of Others: A Critique of Randall Kennedy and Barack Obama’s Black Respectability Politics, 623 BLACK COMMENTATOR (Oct. 1, 2015).
      Available at: Black Commentator

      Diversity and Living Constitution Theory, ACS BLOG (Sept. 15, 2015).

      Fisher v. Texas, The Remix, ISCOTUS NOW (July 18, 2015).
      Available at: iSCOTUSnow

      Affirmative Action Survives—For Now, CHICAGO-KENT FACULTY BLOG, (June 24, 2013).
      Available at: Chicago-Kent Faculty Blog

      Tribute to Professor Derrick Bell, DERRICK BELL OFFICIAL WEBSITE (Oct. 11, 2011).
      Available at: Derrick Bell Website

      Selected Presentations

      Loyola Constitutional Law Colloquium at Loyola University Chicago School of Law (Novemeber 2019).

      Thirteenth Amendment and Racial Justice Conference at Chicago-Kent College of Law (Novemeber 2019).

      Briefs

      Brief for the Fred T. Korematsu Center for Law and Equality et al. as Amicus Curiae, People v. Bridgeforth, 69 N.E.3d 611 (NY CT. APP. 2016) (co-counsel with Akin Gump LLP).
      Available at: SeattleU SoL

      Brief for the Legal Scholars Defending Diversity in Higher Education as Amici Curiae, Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin II, 136 S.Ct. 2198 (2016) (U.S. SUP. CT. NO. 14-981) (co-counsel with Shakira D. Pleasant).
      Available at: SSRN

      In the News

      Awards

      Derrick A. Bell, Jr. Award (2017)
      Awarded by Association of American Law Schools Section on Minority Groups to “a junior faculty member who, through activism, mentoring, colleagueship, teaching and scholarship, has made an extraordinary contribution to legal education, the legal system or social justice.”

      Society of American Law Teachers Junior Faculty Award (2016)
      Awarded by Society of American Law Teachers to “an outstanding recent entrant into legal education who demonstrates a commitment to justice, equality and academic excellence.”

      Impact

      Diversity Within Racial Groups and the Constitutionality of Race-Conscious Admissions, 15 UNIV. PENN. J. CONST. L. 463 (2012).

      Quoted: Fisher v. University of Texas. at Austin II, 136 S.Ct. 2198, 2231 n.9 (2016) (Alito, J.).

      Cited in eight U.S. Supreme Court amicus briefs in the Fisher litigation.

      Cited in 24 law review articles as of June 2019.

      Ambiguity, Ambivalence, and Awakening: A South Asian Becoming “Critically”Aware of Race in America, 11 BERKELEY J. AFR.-AM. L. & POL'Y 71 (2009).

      Reprinted: 2 Critical Race Theory in Education: Major Themes in Education 93 (Adrienne D. Dixson et al. eds., 2018)

      Cited: United States v. Mahbub, 818 F.3d 213, 224 n.12 (6th CIR. CT. 2016)

      Cited: Defendant-Appellant in People v. Bridgeforth (NY CT. APP. 2016)

      Narrowly Tailored but Broadly Compelling: Defending Race-Conscious Admissions After Fisher, 45 SETON HALL L. REV. 761 (2015).

      Cited in three U.S. Supreme Court amicus briefs in Fisher v. Univ. of Tex. at Austin II, 136 S.Ct. 2198 (2016).

      To Be White, Black, or Brown? South Asian Americans and the Race-Color Distinction, 14 WASH. UNIV. GLOBAL STUD. L. REV. 609 (2015).

      Cited: Defendant-Appellant in People v. Bridgeforth, 69 N.E.3d 611 (N.Y. 2016).

      Cited: Brief for Fred T. Korematsu Center for Law and Equality et al., People v. Bridgeforth, 69 N.E.3d 611 (NY CT. APP. 2016).

      Fisher’s Fishing Expedition,15 UNIV. of PENN. J. CONST. L HEIGHTENED SCRUTINY 57 (2013).

      Cited: Breif for Society of American Law Teachers, Fisher v. Univ. of Tex. at Austin II, 136 S.Ct. 2198 (2016).

      DesiCrit: Theorizing the Racial Ambiguity of South Asian Americans, 69 N.Y.U. ANN. SURV. AM. L. 77 (2013).

      Suggested reading Critical Race Theory: An Introduction 75 (Richard Delgado & Jean Stefancic eds., 3d ed. 2017).

      Victory is Defeat: The Ironic Consequence of Justice Scalia’s Death for Fisher v. University of Texas, 164 UNIV. PENN. L. REV. ONLINE 155 (2016).

      Reprinted: 28 APPELLATE ADVOCACY 227 (2016).