Synopses & Reviews
In 1986, 70 percent of the first-year class of Harvard Law School wanted to pursue careers in public-interest law. Ten years later, the same percentage of this class was pursuing careers in private corporate firms. How is it that these students began their careers interested in using law as a vehicle for social change, but ended up in those very law firms most resistant to change? How are law students able to reconcile liberal politics with careers in corporate law? Richard D. Kahlenberg's Broken Contract serves to warn prospective law students on the transformation that happens during the second and third years. His memoir explores the intense competitiveness and insidious pressure leading to jobs that are lucrative, prestigious, and challenging-but ultimately unsatisfying. Though Broken Contract doesn't seek to convince every law student to go into public service, Kahlenberg means to challenge and restructure our social institutions to make it easier to follow our impulses toward good instead of toward the goods.