30th Annual Ira C. Rothgerber Jr. Conference: Looking Back to Move Forward: Exploring the Legacy of U.S. Slavery

A Note From the Editors: Content Warning

The Volume 94 Editorial Board of the University of Colorado Law Review advises readers that the pieces in this Symposium Issue include references to and descriptions of violence, racial epithets, and other derogatory language.

Each year, the University of Colorado Law Review coordinates with the Byron R. White Center for the Study of American Constitutional Law to publish a symposium issue in conjunction with the Ira C. Rothgerber Jr. Conference. This year, the conference discussed the difficult but important topic of the legacy of U.S. slavery.

The content of the conference on which this Issue is predicated was challenging and heavy. It discussed one of the cruelest forms of violence humans have inflicted on one another. As Professor Suzette Malveaux discusses in her Foreword, the conversations at the Rothgerber Conference “were rife with serious reflection and, at times, some serious disagreement.”1 Through this disagreement, the opportunity for learning was expanded—we hope the same is true of this Symposium Issue.

The contributors to this Symposium Issue are talented litigators, fierce activists, and experts in the fields of critical race theory and reparations. And, while they have all dedicated their careers to racial justice, they also have diverse opinions on the best way to tell the story of racial violence in the United States. The University of Colorado Law Review has chosen to give greater deference to the contributors’ choices about how to tell these stories.

The University of Colorado Law Review condemns the careless inclusion of dehumanizing language and does not typically publish racial epithets or derogatory terms. Still, as we center the voices and experiences of people of color in this Symposium Issue, the Volume 94 Editorial Board has chosen to give greater deference to the judgment and writing choices of our contributors. As such, we advise our readers that some of the works included in this Issue quote highly offensive language—the language that was and continues to be a weapon in racist violence and White supremacy. The authors have made intentional choices to include this language in their works, and we defer to their expertise in the hopes it will expand our and our readers’ learning.

1.Suzette M. Malveaux, Foreword: Looking Back to Move Forward, 94 U. COLO. L. REV. 373, 379 (2023).

Front Matter



Loving Reparations
Eric J. Miller


Slave Law, Race Law
Gabriel J. Chin