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Emily M.S.  Houh


Emily M.S. Houh

Gustavus Henry Wald Professor of the Law and Contracts


BA, Brown University
JD, University of Michigan

Areas of Interest

  • Commercial Law
  • Contracts

Professor Houh teaches contracts, commercial law, and critical race theory and co-directs the Center for Race, Gender, and Social Justice.  An award-winning teacher, she also serves as the faculty advisor to the Freedom Center Journal.   Her scholarship focuses on contract law, critical race theory, and more recently, on participatory action research and law. She is a frequent speaker on these topics at national conferences and symposia. Her articles and essays have appeared in such journals as the Cornell Law Review, University of Pittsburgh Law Review, Utah Law Review, U.C. Davis Law Review, Law & Society Review, California Law Review, and Michigan Journal of Race and Law.

Professor Houh has served as chair of the Association of American Law Schools (AALS) Section on Law and the Humanities and on the Board of Governors of the Society of American Law Teachers,

A graduate of Brown University, Professor Houh earned her JD from the University of Michigan Law School, where she was a founding member and article editor of the Michigan Journal of Race & Law. After law school, Professor Houh served as a law clerk to the Honorable Anna Diggs Taylor, U.S. District Judge for the Eastern District of Michigan. Before entering academia, she also practiced law as a staff attorney with the Legal Assistance Foundation of Chicago and as a litigation associate at Miller, Canfield, Paddock & Stone, PLC, in Detroit.


Book Chapters

    • Contract Law as a Source of Antidiscrimination Law in Intergenerational Inequality: The Role of Race in Law, Markets, and Social Structures (Russell Sage Foundation, 2007)

Articles, Essays & Book Reviews


  • Contracting Identities: The Antisubordinating Potential of Contract Law, Washington and Lee University School of Law (March 24, 2008)
  • The Antidiscriminatory Impulse of Contract Law, University of Pittsburgh School of Law (February 8, 2007)
  • Why Bargaining Matters in Identity Matters: A Critical Race Approach to Contract Law, Conference: Power, Inequality and the Bargain—the Role of Bargaining Power in the Law of Contract, Michigan State University College of Law, East Lansing, Michigan (March 31, 2006)
  • The Implied Obligation of Good Faith in Contract Law: An Empty Vessel?, St. Louis University School of Law, St. Louis, MO (February 11, 2004)
  • The False Dichotomy of the Justice and Economic Approaches to Contractual Good Faith, DePaul University College of Law, Chicago, IL (October 20, 2003); 10th Conference of Asian Pacific American Law Faculty, Boston College Law School, Newton, MA (October 17-18, 2003)
  • Contracts
  • Critical Race Theory
  • Payment Systems
  • Sales