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Faculty Profiles

Michael Curtis

Michael Curtis

Judge Donald L. Smith Professor in Constitutional and Public Law

Phone: 336.758.5714
Email: curtismk@wfu.edu
Location: Worrell 3332

Selected Presentations

  • "A Unique Exception from Anti-Discrimination Laws in the case of married or marrying gays," presentation for the faculty of Georgia State University School of Law, January 2013.
  • Debates on the Affordable Care Act at the Wake Forest University School of Medicine and at Wake Forest Law School (with Professor Mark Hall), April 2012.
  • American Journalism Historians Association, Annual Conference: Lost Cause, Lost Reality (Civil War), North Carolina's [Pre-]Civil War Experience: Presentation on Freedom for Anti-Slavery Speech in North Carolina and Elsewhere Before the Civil War, (by invitation). October 2012.
  • "Was Tourgee right? Was the Supreme Court a consistent enemy of liberty and equal rights?" presentation for the symposium: "A Radical Notion of Democracy: Law, Race and Albion Tourgee, 1865-1905," sponsored by UNC Center for the Study of the American South, The North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources; Elon University School of Law, UNC School of Law, and the NC Institute for Constitutional Law." November 2011.
  • "North Carolina Tried Democracy: Albion Tourgee and the Historical Background of the North Carolina Constitution of 1868," Conference on Greensboro Lawyers in the 19th Century (by invitation). October 2011.
  • "The Fraying Fabric of Freedom," a lunch keynote address on free speech history and the First Amendment, conference on free speech and press and criminal law, Texas Tech University, April 2011 (invited presentation).
  • "Lincoln the War President," Conference on Prerogative Powers, Michigan State University, March 2011 (invited presentation).
  • Presentation to the Greensboro Bar Association on Albion Tourgee, lawyer for Plessy in Plessy v. Fergusion. Tourgee was an advocate of racial equality, an opponent of the KKK, a Radical Republican, a Framer of the North Carolina Constitution, a Superior Court Judge, a Novelist, and much more. (2010) (by invitation).
  • Comment on a paper by Randy Barnett on Anti-Slavery Constitutionalism, Conference on Interpretavism, Center for Constitutional Interpretavism, University of San Diego School of Law, February 2010 (by invitation).
  • Presentation at ABA Teleconference on Incorporation of the Bill of Rights and McDonald v. City of Chicago, February 2010 (by invitation).
  • Presentation on "Citizens United and Davis v. FEC: Lochner on Steroids and Democracy on Life Support," to a colloquium at the University of Illinois School of Law, November 2010 (invited presentation.
  • Keynote Address: "Revisiting Application of the Bill of Rights to the States in Light of Heller" for the Symposium: The Second Amendment After Heller, Hastings College of Law & Hastings Law Review, February 2009.
  • Keynote Address: "The Bill of Rights and the States: An Overview from One Perspective," Conference on Incorporation of the Bill of Rights sponsored by the University of San Diego School of Law and its Institute on Originalism, January 2009.
  • "The Klan, the Congress and the Court: Congressional Enforcement of the 14th Amendment Against Private Violence," (American Constitution Society Conference on the Second Founding, University of Pennsylvania School of Law, October 2008).
  • Be Careful What You Wish For: Dueling High School T-Shirts About Homosexuality & The Perils of Suppression (Wake Forest Law Review Symposium, 2008).
  • Andrew Johnson and the Fourteenth Amendment (National Parks Service Symposium on Andrew Johnson) near the Andrew Johnson Historic Site, Tuscullom College, Tennessee 2008.
  • The Fourteenth Amendment: Recalling What the Court Forgot (Drake Constitutional Law Symposium 2007).
  • The Future of the Supreme Court, Winston-Salem Bar Association. 2005.
  • "The Ecology of Freedom of Expression," at a symposium on free speech at the University of Maryland.
  • "Democratic Ideals and Media Realities," Conference on Freedom of Speech, Social Philosophy and Policy Center, Bowling Free State University, April 2003.
  • John Bingham and the Story of American Liberty, Legal History section, Association of American Law Schools, Washington, DC, January 2003.
  • Keynote Address:  "42 U.S.C. section 1983 and the Secret Story of American Liberty," at a North Carolina Bar Association program on litigation under 42 U.S.C. section 1983, March, 2003.
  • Lincoln and Civil Liberties During the Civil War, the American Society of Legal History, November 2003.
  • Lincoln and Vallandigham:  Civil Liberties During the Civil War, the Library of Congress program on the Civil War, November 2003.
  • "John A. Bingham and the Story of American Liberty:  The Lost Cause Meets the "Lost Clause.'"  Symposium, John Bingham and the Meaning of the Fourteenth Amendment, University of Akron School of Law, October 2002.
  • "The Constitution in Times of Crisis," North Carolina Bar Association, February 2002.
  • "The Constitution and the Other Constitution," symposium on the Constitution and the Presidential Election, Wake Forest University, October 2000. (Broadcast on C-Span).
  • "John Bingham and Civil Liberties," Symposium on the 100th Anniversary of the Death of John Bingham, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C., March 2000. (Broadcast on C-Span).
  • Back to the Future:  What 19th Century Free Speech Law Can Teach Lawyers Today, Federalist Society National Lawyers Conference, Washington, DC, November 1999.
  • "Two Textual Adventures," symposium on textualism and the Constitution, George Washington University, February 1998.

Presentations based on "Free Speech, The People's Darling Privilege"

  • "Civil Liberties During the Civil War:  The Case of Clement Vallandigham," Library of Congress program on the Civil War in American Memory, October 2002.
  • Putting the Constitution in Context:  Adding History to the Teaching of Constitutional Law, focusing on use in teaching of stories from free speech history from the Sedition Act through the Civil War, AALS Annual Meeting, January 2002.
  • The Trial of Clement Vallandigham before a Military Commission for Making an Anti-War Speech During the Civil War, Program on the War and the Constitution, AALS Annual Meeting, January 2002.
  • The Development of Our Free Speech Tradition, DePaul Law School, November 2001.
  • A New Birth of Freedom:  The Crusade Against Slavery and the Nationalization of Freedom of Speech, Fourth Annual Bell Distinguished Lecture in Law, College of Wooster, Wooster, Ohio.
  • A New Birth of Freedom:  The Crusade Against Slavery and the Freedom of Speech, to the law faculty and another sponsored by the Center for the Study of the American South, UNC at Chapel Hill, February 2001.
  • Free Speech History, symposium on Free Speech, The People's Darling Privilege, William and Mary Law School, January 2001.
  • Teaching Free Speech from an Incomplete Fossil Record, symposium on Education and the Constitution, University of Akron School of Law, March 2000.