The D.B. Goodman Fellowship was established in memory of the late David B. Goodman, Q.C. of Toronto by members of his family, friends and professional associates with the intention of bringing to the law school, on an annual basis, a distinguished member of the practising bar or bench for a few days of teaching and informal discussions with the student body and faculty.

It was the intention of the founders of this fellowship that the Goodman Fellow would, on the one hand, bring to the Faculty the benefit of insights and ideas gained from long experience in the practical application of the law and, on the other hand, himself or herself be refreshed by a short return to the academic legal community.

2018-19 Annual David B. Goodman Lecture

Dr. Menaka Guruswamy

Dr. Menaka Guruswamy
BR Ambedkar Research Scholar and Lecturer at Columbia Law School

“Irrational, indefensible, and manifestly arbitrary” 

Tuesday, October 23
4:10 pm
Rosalie Silberman Abella Moot Court Room (J250)
Jackman Law Building, 78 Queen's Park 

Professor Guruswamy recently represented gay petitioners in India’s Supreme Court, successfully arguing that India’s ban against consensual gay sex should be struck down.  In its unanimous decision the justices ruled gay Indians are to be accorded all the protections of the Constitution.  She will discuss the case during this year’s Goodman Lecture. Find out more about the case in this New York Times article, "India Gay Sex Ban Is Struck Down. ‘Indefensible,’ Court Says."

Dr. Menaka Guruswamy is BR Ambedkar Research Scholar and Lecturer at Columbia Law School. She also practices law before the Supreme Court of India.

Dr. Guruswamy has practiced law in New York, as an associate at Davis Polk & Wardwell. She has advised the United Nations Development Fund, New York and United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), New York and UNICEF South Sudan on various aspects of International Human Rights Law and has also supported the constitution-making process in Nepal.

In her litigation practice in India, she focusses on large constitutional rights claims, and has successfully brought reform of the bureaucracy in the country, defended federal legislation that mandates that all private schools admit disadvantaged children, and challenged colonial-era laws that criminalise consensual same-sex relations. She is amicus curiae appointed by the Supreme Court in a case concerning 1528 alleged extra-judicial killings by the military and security personnel.

Watch the video of the lecture:


See the Goodman Lecture archives to find out information about past lectures, including in some cases a description, the text, or a video of the lecture.