Robin B. Kar
Professor of Law and Philosophy
Professor Robin B. Kar joined the College of Law faculty in the fall of 2009 as a professor of law and philosophy and the Thomas Mengler Faculty Scholar. Before taking this position, Professor Kar served as a professor of law at Loyola Law School – Los Angeles and as deputy director of their Center for Interdisciplinary and Comparative Jurisprudence. Professor Kar focuses his scholarship on subjects such as jurisprudence, moral and political philosophy, and the role of contract law and markets in modern political society. His work is widely-read on SSRN, including "The Deep Structure of Law and Morality, Hart's Response to Exclusive Legal Positivism, "and the recently-revised "Contractualism about Contract Law."
Professor Kar earned his bachelor of arts magna cum laude from Harvard University, his J.D. from Yale Law School, and his Ph.D. from the University of Michigan, where he was a Rackham Merit Fellow, Rackham Predoctoral Fellow and Charlotte Newcombe Fellow. While in law school, Professor Kar was an editor of the Yale Law Journal and Yale Journal of International Law, a Thurman Arnold Prize finalist in moot court, and a participant in the Lowenstein International Human Rights Clinic, the Capital Punishment Clinic, and the Prisoners' Rights Clinic.
He has clerked twice in Manhattan, first for the Honorable Sonia Sotomayor on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit and then for the Honorable John G. Koeltl on the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York. He has also worked for three New York law firms: Davis Polk & Wardwell, Paul Weiss Rifkind Wharton & Garrison and Debevoise & Plimpton.
Professor Kar has broad research interests in jurisprudence and moral and political philosophy and in those areas of the law – like the common law – that appear to reflect moral imperatives. He has more particularized interests in the role of contract law and markets in modern political society and in responses to the now-dominant accounts of these phenomena found in the law and economics literature. Professor Kar has also developed a general account of our sense of moral and legal obligation, which draws on recent advances in a number of cognate fields (including evolutionary game theory, sociology, psychology, anthropology, animal behavioral studies, and philosophy), and which provides a more fundamental challenge to economic assumptions about human action than is present in the behavioral economics literature. In 2006, he was an Associate Faculty Member at Yale's Center for Law and Philosophy. In 2008, he received tenure at Loyola and was a visiting professor at the University of Illinois and at the USC Gould School of Law.