James E. Pfander

Prof. James E. Pfander

Owen L. Coon Professor of Law, Northwestern University Pritzker School of Law

James E. Pfander has focused his teaching and research on the role of the federal judiciary under Article III of the Constitution. His latest book, Constitutional Torts and the War on Terror (Oxford U. Press 2017), documents and evaluates the failure of the federal courts to address the merits of the claims of individuals who were subjected to extraordinary rendition, military detention, and torture during the Bush Administration’s war on terror. Other books include Civil Procedure: A Modern Approach (7th ed. 2018) (with Marcus, Redish & Sherman); Federal Courts: Cases, Comments, and Questions (8th ed. 2018) (with Redish & Sherry), Principles of Federal Jurisdiction (3d ed. 2017).

Pfander’s recent scholarship explores the role of non-contentious jurisdiction in a federal system otherwise largely devoted to the resolution of disputes between adverse parties; the forgotten distinction between “cases” and “controversies” in defining the work of the federal judiciary; the lessons available from Scotland’s civil-law-inflected approach to the problem of litigant standing; the origins and meaning of the anti-injunction act of 1793; and the possible influence of the Scottish judicial system on the structure of the federal court system. 

A member of the American Law Institute, Pfander recently concluded his work as reporter/consultant to the Federal-State Jurisdiction Committee of the Judicial Conference of the United States. He has served as chair of both the federal courts and civil procedure sections of the Association of American Law Schools.

2019 National Lawyers Convention


The Mayflower Hotel
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