Gendered Interruptions Revisited: New Evidence and Techniques for Assessing the Question in Australia

In a pathbreaking study of the US Supreme Court, Professor Tonja Jacobi (Emory) found a startling pattern regarding interruptions of justices in the US Supreme Court: a pattern in which men interrupted women at far higher rates. In early, qualitative studies in Australia, Amelia Loughland found a similar pattern. The scope and strength of those patterns in Australia, however, remains open to debate.

In this hybrid seminar, hosted by the UNSW Gilbert + Tobin Centre of Public Law, Professor Jacobi revisits this and broader questions of High Court practice – using new evidence and statistical techniques. Her findings are also worthy of note: gendered effects are identifiable in Australia, but mixed in origin, and demonstrably smaller than in the US. What should we make of this finding, and what does it suggest about the health of Australian bar and judicial practice, as well as the scope for potential reform?

The seminar will be held at the UNSW Faculty of Law & Justice (Level Two Staff Common Room) and online via Zoom. Lunch will be served to those attending in person.