Adding Feminism to Law

The Contributions of Justice Claire L’Heureux-Dubé


The nineteen essays in this volume celebrate the judicial career of Justice Claire L'Heureux-Dubé and consider the unique ways in which her work as a judge of the Supreme Court of Canada enhanced women’s legal and social equality in Canada. Written by leading legal scholars, jurists, and social activists, these essays examine Justice L'Heureux-Dubé’s substantive contributions to areas of the law including family law, taxation, human rights law, immigration law, and criminal law, as well as examining the ways in which her judgments advanced access to justice and the rights of Aboriginal people, gays and lesbians, and people with disabilities in Canada. Finally, they look at the influence her decisions have had in jurisdictions beyond Canadian borders.

As the papers in this collection demonstrate, Justice L'Heureux-Dubé’s work — both on the bench and as a public figure — advanced a feminist analysis of law that served to enhance the quality of life for Canadian women. As importantly, they document her approach to judging, which was defined by human compassion and an ability to see and understand the lived reality of people’s lives.

During her fifteen years on the Supreme Court from 1987 to 2002, Justice L'Heureux-Dubé participated in over six hundred Charter of Rights decisions, many of which were profoundly significant and often controversial. Anyone interested in the enterprise of judging generally and in the history of the Court and its role in Canadian society during these turbulent times will find this book a most important addition to their library.

Table of Contents

Introductory Materials
Chapter 1: Foreword - Chief Justice Beverley McLachlin
Chapter 2: Introduction - Elizabeth Sheehy
Chapter 3: Tribute - Justice Rosalie Silberman Abella

Chapter 4: A Feminist View of the Supreme Court from the Anti-Rape Frontline - Lee Lakeman
Chapter 5: The Era of Concealed Underlying Premises Is Over: Justice L'Heureux Dubé’s Contribution to Statutory Interpretation - Ruth Sullivan
Chapter 6: Claire L'Heureux-Dubé: Reflections from Down Under - Reg Graycar
Chapter 7: Être le miroir de son époque: la primauté du droit, la critique égalitaire, et la contribution de Madame la juge L'Heureux-Dubé - Natalie Des Rosiers
Chapter 8: Backlash and the Feminist Judge: The Work of Justice Claire L'Heureux-Dubé - Hester Lessard
Chapter 9: Bars, Breasts, Babies: Justice L'Heureux-Dubé and the Boundaries of Belonging - Rebecca Johnson

Chapter 10: Contextualizing the Best Interests of the Child: Justice L'Heureux-Dubé’s Approach to Child Custody and Access Law - Susan B. Boyd
Chapter 11: Baker revisité : le contrôle judiciare de décisions humanitaires où l'intérêt de l'enfant est en cause - Yves Le Bouthillier
Chapter 12: The Social Phenomenon of Handicapping - Ena Chadha
Chapter 13: Taxing Times at the Supreme Court of Canada: The Contributions of Justice L'Heureux-Dubé to a Better Understanding of the Application of the Charter to the Income Tax System - Claire F.L. Young
Chapter 14: Justice L'Heureux-Dubé and Canadian Sexual Assault Law: Resisting the Privatization of Rape - Elizabeth Sheehy and Christine Boyle

Chapter 15: Travels With Justice L'Heureux-Dubé: Equality Law Abroad - Margot Young
Chapter 16: Inequalities and the Social Context - Mary Jane Mossman
Chapter 17: Personalizing the Political and Politicizing the Personal: Understanding Justice McClung and his Defenders - Sheila McIntyre
Chapter 18: Outside/In: Lesbian and Gay Issues as a Site of Struggle in the Judgments of Justice Claire L'Heureux-Dubé - Shelley A.M. Gavigan
Chapter 19: Rooms with “Traditional Views”: Justice L'Heureux-Dubé and the Expansion of Interpretative Principles Related to Equality in the Context of Indigenous Rights - Tracey Lindberg
Chapter 20: Justice L'Heureux-Dubé: Dimensions of a Quintessential Judicial Leader - Justice Corrine Sparks

Of interest...