voices of women in law // voix des femmes en droit


Written by Annie O’Dell, Charlotte-Anne Malischewski, Erin Moores, and Margery Pazdor.

Contours is a project to map and shape the contours of debates, experiences, concerns, and aspirations around the intersection of women and the law. It is a space for women’s voices and an invitation for us all to be in conversation.

Founded in 2012, this publication responds to our concern that male voices still dominate classroom discussions, men still outnumber women in positions of power in firms and the judiciary, and the law itself continues in many ways to be disproportionately influenced by male concerns. It was born out of our desire to create a safe space in which to have, in the public sphere, those conversations so often limited to private interactions. Women’s personal stories of our experiences with the law, inquiries into issues or themes that inspire us, anger us, or touch us, and artistic expression also, in our view, deserve a place for public expression.

While our contributors may share similar concerns, Contours also serves as a venue for us to become newly aware of others’ ideas and experiences. That the title of our publication will necessarily be interpreted differently by each contributor and reader mirrors the ways in which we all have different perspectives on women’s complex relationship with the law.

Pour notre deuxième édition, nous avons invité nos contributrices à écrire en ayant en tête le thème des valeurs. Nous reconnaissons que l’expérience féminine est diverse. Nous ne sommes pas que des femmes; nous sommes des filles, des soeurs, des mères, des voyageuses, des combattantes, des croyantes ou des athées, des survivantes, des philosophes. Cette édition de Contours célèbre la diversité de nos valeurs, et nos contributrices ont été encouragées à interpréter le thème aussi largement et créativement qu’elles le souhaitaient.

Our contributors’ values are presented here as they are: varied, fluid, forceful, questioning, and honest. From deeply personal explorations of what it means to be a feminist to thoughtful analysis of issues that affect us all, the contributors to this volume present a compelling and diverse exploration of values. Nous sommes aussi ravis de vous présenter une entrevue spéciale avec l’honorable Claire L’Heureux-Dubé qui partage avec nous des moments forts mémorables de sa longue et fascinante carrière.

Bonne lecture. Welcome to the conversation

Contours is made possible by funding from the McGill Law Students’ Association / L’Association des étudiant-e-s en droit de McGill. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced in whole or in part without permission from the authors.

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