Deborah Anthony

Professor Deborah Anthony


J.D., Georgetown University Law Center
M.A., Government, University of Texas at Austin

Associate Professor

University of Illinois at Springfield
Legal Studies Department
Telephone: (217)206-8340
Office: PAC 340


Deborah Anthony came to UIS in 2006. Prior to joining the Legal Studies department, she practiced law serving indigent individuals, where she specialized in family law, domestic violence, civil rights, and housing law, including public and subsidized housing.  She currently teaches in the areas of constitutional law, philosophy of law, poverty law, family law, employment discrimination, and public advocacy.  Her research interests include modern and historical gender law and politics, feminist perspectives on family law, constitutional law, and employment discrimination.  She has published on topics such as the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Family and Medical Leave Act and its disparate effects on women, Title VII as applied to gender identity, parental leave policies at colleges and universities, and sex-based rights in family law.  Recent work has focused on the historical development of women’s legal and political status as viewed through the lens of their surnames.  This broad project focuses on the ways in which women’s rights became increasingly constricted over time in English legal history, and the impact of those developments on U.S. law and tradition.  It includes analysis of the political, legal, and economic developments that jointly operated to rein in women’s participation in legal and public life, and uncovers the ways in which political memory operates to manipulate public conceptions of historical events in ways that shape notions of tradition and thereby alter the collective sense of the present, concepts of personal and national identity, and directions in public policy.


Eradicating Women’s Surnames: Law, Tradition, and the Politics of Memory, Columbia Journal of Gender and Law (forthcoming 2018).

Analyzing the Disappearance of Women’s Surnames and the Retrenchment of their Political-Legal Status in Early Modern England, 29 Hastings Women’s Law Journal 7 (2018).

To Have, to Hold, and to Vanquish: Property and Inheritance in the History of Marriage and Surnames, 5 British Journal of American Legal Studies 217 (2016).

In the Name of the Father: Compulsion, Tradition, and Law in the Lost History of Women’s Surnames, 25 Journal Jurisprudence 61 (2015).

Sex at Work: Title VII Discrimination and the Application of “Because of Sex” to Transgender Employees, 36 Women’s Rights Law Reporter 112 (2014).

 Caught in the Middle: Transsexual Marriage and the Disconnect between Sex and Legal Sex, 21 Texas Journal of Women and the Law 153 (2012).

A Spouse by Any Other Name, in Women and the Law 515 (Tracy Thomas ed., West 2011).

Tradition, Conflict, and Progress: A Closer Look at Childbirth and Parental Leave Policy on University Campuses, 12 Georgetown Journal of Gender and Law 91 (2011).

A Spouse by Any Other Name, 17 William and Mary Journal of Women and the Law 187 (2010).

The Hidden Harms of the Family and Medical Leave Act: Gender-neutral versus Gender-equal, 16 American University Journal of Gender, Social Policy and the Law 459 (2008).

Genetic Testing under the ADA: A Case for Protection from Employment Discrimination, 89 Georgetown Law Journal 973 (2001).