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Faculty Profiles
Professor Carlos Ball
LL.M., Cambridge
J.D., Columbia
B.A., Tufts
Property, First Amendment, Sexual Orientation and the Law
Professor Balls SSRN page and Huffington Post blog Amicus brief submitted to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit in Deboer v. Snyder

Faculty Profile (Back to Menu)

Carlos A. Ball

Distinguished Professor of Law and Judge Frederick Lacey Scholar
(on leave Spring 2015)

Professor Ball’s latest book, Same-Sex Marriage and Children: A Tale of History, Social Science, and Law, was published by the Oxford University Press in June 2014. Professor Ball is also the author of The Right to be Parents: LGBT Families and the Transformation of Parenthood (NYU Press, 2012); From the Closet to the Courtroom: Five LGBT Rights Cases That Have Changed Our Nation (Beacon, 2010); and The Morality of Gay Rights: An Exploration in Political Philosophy (Routledge, 2003). In addition, he is a co-editor of Cases and Materials on Sexual Orientation and the Law (West, 5th edition, 2014).

Professor Ball is a frequent speaker at conferences and symposia. In the last few years, he has presented papers at the annual meetings of the Association of American Law Schools, Law and Society, the American Philosophical Association, and the American Political Science Association. During that time, he has also presented his scholarship at the Colorado, Columbia, Emory, Fordham, Harvard, Georgetown, Minnesota, NYU, UCLA, Virginia, and William & Mary law schools, among others.

His writings have appeared in the Cornell Law Review, the Columbia Journal of Gender & the Law, the Georgetown Law Journal, the Harvard Journal of Law & Gender, the Minnesota Law Review, the North Carolina Law Review, the UCLA Law Review, and the William and Mary Law Review, among others. 

Professor Ball received his B.A. summa cum laude from Tufts University, his J.D. from Columbia Law School, where he was a Kent Scholar and the book reviews editor of the Columbia Law Review, and his LL.M. from Cambridge University, where he was awarded a “First.” He clerked for Chief Justice Paul Liacos of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court and worked as a lawyer for the Legal Aid Society in New York City in the early 1990s. He joined the law school in 2008 after teaching at the University of Illinois College of Law for eight years and at the Penn State School of Law for five. 



Same-Sex Marriage and Children: A Tale of History, Social Science, and Law (Oxford University Press, 2014)

Cases and Materials on Sexual Orientation & the Law (5th edition) (with William Rubenstein, Jane Schacter, and Douglas NeJaime) (West, 2014)

The Right to Be Parents: LGBT Families and the Transformation of Parenthood (NYU Press, May 2012)

From the Closet to the Courtroom: Five LGBT Lawsuits That Have Changed Our Nation (Beacon Press, 2010). 

Book Chapters 

“LGBT People and the Constitution,” in Advanced Persuasive Strategies: Briefs That Changed the World (Linda Edwards, ed.) (Aspen, 2012)

“Optimism and Pessimism in American Legal Philosophy,” in On Philosophy in American Law (Jay Mootz, ed.) (Cambridge University Press, 2009)

“Against Neutrality in the Legal Recognition of Intimate Relationships,” in Moral Argument, Sexual Minorities, and the Public Good: Advancing the Debate (Gordon Babst, et al., eds.) (Lexington Books, 2009)

“This is Not Your Father’s Autonomy: Lesbian and Gay Rights from a Feminist and Relational Perspective,” in Feminist and Queer Legal Theories: Intimate Encounters, Uncomfortable Conversations (Martha Fineman, et al., eds.) (Ashgate, 2009) 


“Social Science Studies and the Children of Lesbians and Gay Men: The Rational Basis Perspective,” 21 William & Mary Bill of Rights Jr. (2013)

“Rendering Children Illegitimate in Former Partner Parenting Cases: Hiding Behind the Facade of Certainty,” 20 American Univ. Journal of Gender, Social Policy, and Law  623 (2012) 

“When May a President Refuse to Defend a Statute? The Obama Administration & DOMA,” 106 Northwestern L. Rev. Coll. 77 (2011)

“Why Liberty Judicial Review Is as Legitimate as Equality Review: The Case of Gay Rights Jurisprudence,” 14 U.Penn. Jr. of Constitutional L. 1 (2011)

“The Proper Role of Morality in State Policies on Sexual Orientation and Intimate Relationships,” 34 N.Y.U. Rev. L. & Social Ch. 81 (2011)

“Martha Nussbaum, Essentialism, and Sexuality,” 19 Columbia Journal of Gender & the Law 3 (2010)

“Privacy, Property, and Public Sex,” 18 Columbia Journal of Gender & the Law 1 (2009)