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Conservative cause advocacy: The multiple sites of conservative legal ideology

Laura Jean Hatcher, University of Massachusetts Amherst


This project is a study of right-wing legal activism as it manifested itself at the end of the twentieth century on behalf of property rights. Political scientists and sociolegal scholars have done scant research on conservative movements. Yet, the importance of understanding legal activism that is neither progressive nor “liberal” is crucial for understanding today's political scene as well as adding to our knowledge about the processes of social change and the role lawyers play in them. The activists studied here are important largely because of their positions as elite academics, lawyers and their connections to important governmental officials and business interests. They have been working diligently to change notions of property in the U.S. to conform to their vision of what is appropriate for a good society. However, rather than studying them as a broad movement with a consistent worldview, this research utilizes historical research, content analysis and observation of meetings to describe the activity of ideology creation they engage in within several different settings and provides an analysis for the wide range of strategies and activities these activists use in the production of property notions in today's United States.

Subject Area

Political science|Law

Recommended Citation

Hatcher, Laura Jean, "Conservative cause advocacy: The multiple sites of conservative legal ideology" (2002). Doctoral Dissertations Available from Proquest. AAI3068565.