Kenji Yoshino
Born (1969-05-01) May 1, 1969 (age 54)
EducationHarvard University (BA)
Magdalen College, Oxford (MSc)
Yale University (JD)

Kenji Yoshino (born May 1, 1969) is a legal scholar and the Chief Justice Earl Warren Professor of Constitutional Law at New York University School of Law.[1] Formerly, he was the Guido Calabresi Professor of Law at Yale Law School. His work involves constitutional law, anti-discrimination law, civil and human rights, as well as law and literature, and Japanese law and society.


Yoshino graduated from Phillips Exeter Academy (1987) as valedictorian and Harvard College, obtaining a B.A. in English literature summa cum laude in 1991.[2] Between undergraduate years, Yoshino worked as an aide for various members of the Japanese Parliament. He moved on to Magdalen College, Oxford as a Rhodes Scholar, earning a M.Sc. in management studies (industrial relations) in 1993. In 1996, he earned a J.D. from Yale Law School, where he was an editor of the Yale Law Journal.


From 1996 to 1997, Yoshino served as a law clerk for Judge Guido Calabresi of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. In 1998, he received a tenure-track position at Yale Law School as an associate professor, and in 2003 the school bestowed a full professorship. In 2006, he was named the inaugural Guido Calabresi Professor of Law.[3] Courts throughout the United States, including the U.S. Supreme Court,[4] have referenced Yoshino's work.

His first book Covering: The Hidden Assault on Our Civil Rights was published in 2006. It is a mix of argument intertwined with pertinent biographical narratives.[5] His second book, A Thousand Times More Fair: What Shakespeare's Plays Teach Us About Justice was published in 2011. In 2016, his book Speak Now: Marriage Equality on Trial was published and received the Stonewall Book Award's Israel Fishman Non-Fiction Award.[6]

Covering won the Randy Shilts Award for Gay Non-Fiction from Publishing Triangle in 2007.[citation needed] His major areas of interest include social dynamics, conformity and assimilation, as well as queer (LGBT) and personal liberty issues. He has been a co-plaintiff in cases related to his specialties.[citation needed]

During the 2006-2007 and 2007-2008 school years, he served as a visiting professor at New York University School of Law, and in February 2008 he accepted a full-time tenured position as the Chief Justice Earl Warren Professor of Constitutional Law.[1]

In May 2011, Yoshino was elected to the Harvard Board of Overseers, where he served a six-year term.[7] In 2023, Kenji Yoshino joined the Facebook Oversight Board.[8]

Personal life

A Japanese American, and openly gay man, Yoshino writes poetry for personal enjoyment.[9]

Major works

See also


  1. ^ a b NYU Hires Kenji Yoshino as Permanent Faculty Member[permanent dead link]
  2. ^ "Kenji Yoshino - Overview | NYU School of Law". Retrieved 2019-09-11.
  3. ^ "Announcement of Professor Kenji Yoshino as Inaugural Guido Calabresi Professor of Law" (PDF) (Press release). Yale Law School. 2006-10-14. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2010-07-12.
  4. ^ Boy Scouts of America v. Dale, 530 640 (U.S. 2000).
  5. ^ Yoshino, Kenji (2006-01-15). "The Pressure to Cover". The New York Times Magazine.
  6. ^ "Stonewall Book Awards List". American Library Association. 9 September 2009. Retrieved August 5, 2021.
  7. ^ "Overseers 2011 election results". Harvard Gazette. 2011-05-26. Retrieved 2019-11-06.
  8. ^ Holt, Kris (February 14, 2023). "Meta's Oversight Board will take on more cases and make decisions faster". Engadget. Retrieved 2023-02-14.
  9. ^ Yoshino, Kenji.A Conversation with Yale Law Professor Kenji Yoshino, Author of 'Covering: The Hidden Assault on Our Civil Rights' Archived 2007-06-10 at the Wayback Machine, transcript of Court TV program (February 17, 2005). Retrieved on May 17, 2007.