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Free Speech Movement Oral History Project

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Richard Buxbaum Transcript

Conducted by Lisa Rubens in 2000-2001, Regional Oral History Office, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley, 2013.

 
Photo of Richard Buxbaum from Berkeley UC Law

Richard Buxbaum was a professor of law at Boalt Hall whose faculty was called upon by Chancellor Strong “ to provide a clarion call for law and order.” He discusses the effort of the faculty to “hang together” and his own support for the steering committee of the FSM which “ran rings around the administration’s tactical approach because they were always one step behind and one dollar short. They never could get ahead of the curve.” He was asked by Mal Bernstein to join the defense counsul and discusses in detail the questions and concerns in preparing a legal strategy. He also discusses his birth in Germany, his Jewish background and liberal father who moved the family to an Indian reservation in Bombay, New York, his own left leaning experiences at Cornell University, the influence of Frank Newman and Adrian Kragen at Boalt, animosity from some Boalt alumni. Buxbaum concludes with recounting his later work representing the ASUC in anti-draft demonstrations, observations on the Third World Strike at Berkeley, his teaching corporate law and opinion about Critical Legal Studies.



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