Paul Butler

Professor Paul Butler researches and teaches in the areas of criminal law, race relations law, and critical theory. His scholarship has been published in many leading scholarly journals, including the Yale Law Journal, the Harvard Law Review, the Stanford Law Review and the UCLA Law Review. He is the author of the widely reviewed Let’s Get Free: A Hip-Hop Theory of Justice, which received the Harry Chapin Media award.

Butler is one of the nation’s most frequently consulted scholars on issues of race and criminal justice. His scholarship has been the subject of much attention in the academic and popular media, including 60 Minutes, Nightline, and the ABC, CBS and NBC Evening News. Butler has written a column for The Legal Times and has published numerous op-ed articles and book reviews, including in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Los Angeles Times, and The Daily Beast. He lectures regularly for the American Bar Association and the NAACP, and at universities and community organizations. Butler was the Carville Dickinson Benson Research Professor of Law at George Washington University Law School. He also served as associate dean for research and faculty development.

Prior to joining the academy, Butler served as a federal prosecutor with the U.S. Department of Justice, where his specialty was public corruption. His prosecutions included a U.S. senator, three FBI agents, and several other law enforcement officials. While at the Department of Justice, Butler also worked as a special assistant U.S. attorney, prosecuting drug and gun cases.

Butler is a cum laude graduate of Yale, and a cum laude graduate of Harvard Law School.

Butler will be featured on the panel entitled Breaking the Cycle in a Broken System: A Discussion on Mass Incarceration and Prison Reform with Marc Howard, Director of the Prisons and Justice Initiative, Professor of Government and Law Students of the Prisons and Justice Initiative, and Morris Will O'Kelly (B'91)