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Lois Gander, Q.C. LLM

Professor

Extension

About Me

My field is the theory and practice of public legal education which is an interdisciplinary field that draws on the insights of law, education, library science, communications, and public health. I have been involved in public legal education since 1968 and have seen the field become an accepted component of the Canadian justice system. Public legal education is spreading throughout the world, particularly as an aspect of legal aid services.


Research

I am particularly interested in theories of law that promote or inhibit the promotion of social justice. Public legal education was initially grounded in legal positivism which has constrained it from engaging the public in more fundamental justice issues confronting our societies. It also inhibits critical analysis of the role law plays in preferencing certain interests and in perpetuating injustices. I am currently involved in two research projects that explore the role of law in the lives of women experiencing domestic violence. These projects were grounded in earlier research reported in The Hidden Homeless: Residential Tenancies Issues of Victims of Domestic Violence at http://www.cplea.ca/wp-content/uploads/2015/01/FINAL-Report-The-Hidden-Homeless.2014Jun05.pdf.


Teaching

My teaching consists primarily on non-formal and informal legal education events in community settings and in the development of educational resources. However, I am also involved in the development of the curriculum and teaching of a clinical law course on public legal education offered by the School of Law, Birkbeck College, University of London, UK.