Maggie Blackhawk (Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Ojibwe) is a professor of law at New York University and an award-winning interdisciplinary scholar and teacher of constitutional law, federal Indian law, and legislation. Blackhawk was awarded the American Society for Legal History’s William Nelson Cromwell Article Prize, and her research has been published or is forthcoming in the Columbia Law Review, Harvard Law Review, Stanford Law Review, Supreme Court Review, and Yale Law Journal.
Her recent projects examine the ways that American democracy can and should empower minorities, especially outside of traditional rights- and courts-based frameworks. She also studies how the political agency of marginalized communities has shaped American democracy historically and how those communities have leveraged the law to redistribute power. She is particularly interested in how law can structure institutions in ways that empower minorities to govern and engage in lawmaking—petitioning, lobbying, federalism, etc.—and how empowering minorities could be harnessed to better mitigate constitutional failures, like colonialism and slavery.
Blackhawk’s first book project (under contract with Harvard University Press) highlights the centrality of Native Nations, Indigenous peoples, and American colonialism to the constitutional law and constitutional history of the United States. The manuscript builds upon her Harvard Law Review article “Federal Indian Law as Paradigm within Public Law” and aims to bring the study of American colonialism and Native peoples to the fore in broader discussions of American public law. She earned her JD from Stanford Law School.