In the field of women's legal history, Felice Batlan is both subject and
scholar. Her nine years of practical legal experience supplement her rigorous academic
career, in which she has published and presented extensively on the topics of legal
history, women in the legal profession, and feminist legal theory--occasionally appearing
alongside such prominent feminist figures as Gloria Steinem. She has also provided expert
commentary on numerous radio and television programs. 

After graduating summa cum laude in history from Smith College, Professor Batlan received
her J.D. magna cum laude from Harvard Law School, where she served as executive editor
for the Harvard Women's Law Journal. She clerked for the Honorable Constance Baker
Motley of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York and then worked
as a law firm associate specializing in securities law and financial markets. She then
joined Greenwich NatWest as associate general counsel and head of global compliance.
Eventually she returned to the academic world, completing a Ph.D. in U.S. history from
New York University. 

Since coming to IIT Chicago-Kent from Tulane Law School in 2006, Professor Batlan has
immersed herself in a wide variety of subjects spanning law, financial regulation, and
the humanities, serving as both director of the Institute for Compliance and co-director
of the Institute for Law and the Humanities. Her teaching areas include U.S. legal
history, gender and the law, feminist jurisprudence, corporations, business
organizations, securities regulation, and contracts. She has taught courses
internationally in Sienna, Paris, Guangzhou, Shanghai, Beijing, and Bangkok. She received
Chicago-Kent's Excellence in Teaching Award in 2009 and IIT's Julia Beveridge
Award for service to women students in 2008. 

Professor Batlan was recently appointed as an associate editor and book review editor for
the prestigious Law and History Review. Previously she has performed editorial duties for
Continuity and Change and for the Macmillan-Gale Encyclopedia of the Supreme Court of the
United States, with responsibility for sections on women, gender and sexuality, and
corporations. As a historian, she has served as both a consultant and a member of the
Accession Committee for the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission Historical Society.
She is currently finishing her book Gendering Legal Aid: Lawyers, Social Workers, and the
Poor, 1863-1960, which explores the history of the development of legal aid in the United
States and the significant and unknown role that women played as both providers and
clients of legal aid. 

As the first director of the IIT Chicago-Kent Institute on Compliance, Professor Batlan
has established a series of courses on compliance and financial markets, externships for
students, and a lecture series open to the wider Chicago community of lawyers and
compliance professionals. She is currently working on a compliance casebook to be used by
law students, business students, and the industry. 



Legal History and the Politics of Inclusion, Journal of Women's History (2014)


Women's Legal History Symposium Introduction: Making History, Chicago-Kent Law Review (2012)

This essay introduces the Chicago-Kent Symposium on Women's Legal History: A Global Perspective. It seeks...

"If You Become His Second Wife, You Are a Fool": Shifting Paradigms of the Roles, Perceptions, and Working Conditions of Legal Secretaries in Large Law Firms, Studies in Law, Politics and Society (2010)

"If You Become His Second Wife, You Are a Fool": Shifting Paradigms of the Roles,...



Contributions to Books

Legal Aid, Women Lay Lawyers, and the Rewriting of History, 1863-1930, Feminist Legal History: Essays on Women and Law (2011)


Unpublished Papers


The Gendered Lives of Legal Aid: Lay Lawyers, Social Workers, and the Bar, 1863-1960 (2011)

The Gendered Life of Legal Aid, 1863-1960 (manuscript in process) will be the first monograph...



Florence Kelley and the Battle Against Laissez-Faire Constitutionalism (2010)

The usual story of the demise of laissez-faire constitutionalism in the 1930’s features heroes such...