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33 Law & Ineq. 345 (2015)
Why Obama: An Interest Convergence Explanation of the Nation's First Black President

handle is hein.journals/lieq33 and id is 357 raw text is: 

   Why Obama? An Interest Convergence
   Explanation of the Nation's First Black

                        Richard Delgadot

     This Essay continues a trilogy of efforts devoted to extending
Derrick Bell's intellectual legacy. Earlier, I identified strands in
Bell's scholarship in the period immediately preceding his death.1
These clues show that Bell was intrigued by law's violence and
was approaching a broad synthesis explaining how and why law
sometimes reinforces oppression, with the racial kind just one of
many. I identified two types of violence that were of interest to
Bell-originary and ordinary-and discussed their relation to each
other and the manner in which law interacts with and encourages
each one.
     The present Article shows how Bell, had he lived, might have
applied one of his signature ideas, interest convergence, to explain
events such as the 1964 Civil Rights Act and Obama's presidency.
As readers may know, Bell scandalized many of his colleagues
when he posited, in Brown v. Board of Education and the Interest-
Convergence Dilemma,2 that this landmark decision arrived when
it did (in 1954) not because the Supreme Court underwent a
belated spasm of conscience, but because of a temporary alignment
of Black and White interests.3

    T. John J. Sparkman Chair of Law, University of Alabama School of Law.
J.D., U.C. Berkeley (Boalt Hall), 1974. Thanks to Jean Stefancic and Carmen
Gonzalez for insightful suggestions.
    1. Richard Delgado, Law's Violence: Derrick Bell's Next Article, 75 U. PITT. L.
REV. (forthcoming 2015).
    2. Derrick Bell, Brown v. Board of Education and the Interest- Convergence
Dilemma, 93 HARV. L. REV. 518 (1980) [hereinafter Bell, Interest- Convergence
    3. Id. at 524; see infra Part I. The alignment of interests that Bell described
would soon dissipate. See infra notes 25-28 and accompanying text. On the role of
Bell and other Critical Race theorists as cultural bellwethers, see andre douglas
pond cummings, Richard Delgado and Ice Cube: Brothers in Arms, 33 LAw & INEQ.

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