Southwestern Law School Los Angeles, CA

Faculty Profile

Hila Keren

Hila Keren

Irving D. and Florence Rosenberg Professor of Law

LL.B., magna cum laude, 1992, and Ph.D., 2001, Hebrew University School of Law; Member, Israeli Bar

Courses    Publications

Phone: (213) 738-6755
Office: BW415

Hila Keren brings a unique global perspective on contracts and business law to the classroom, having studied, taught and practiced law in Israel for more than two decades. She served on the Faculty of Law of her alma mater, the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, from 2005 until her appointment to Southwestern in Fall 2010. At Hebrew University, she taught basic and advanced courses in contracts as an Assistant Professor of Law and earned the Outstanding Teaching Award. In 2006, Professor Keren was elected by the Israel Academy of Sciences and Humanities to be a member of its Young Researchers' Forum.

"I am fascinated by relationships between people who seek harmony but struggle to sustain it. Contract law and especially socially oriented contract law offers, I believe, an inspiring framework to think about those issues with my students."

At Southwestern, Professor Keren teaches in the areas of contracts and business law. She says, "I am fascinated by relationships between people who seek harmony but struggle to sustain it. Contract law and especially socially oriented contract law offers, I believe, an inspiring framework to think about those issues with my students."

In addition to earning her LL.B. and Ph.D. degrees in Israel, Professor Keren completed two years of post-doctoral studies at the Center for the Study of Law and Society at the University of California, Berkeley in 2005. During her studies, she was awarded the Birk Foundation Award for Distinguished Research in the Field of Law, the Alice Shalvi Scholarship for Original Feminist Legal Studies, the Rector's Prize for Outstanding Doctoral Students and the Golda Meir Fellowship. She returned to UC Berkeley in 2007-2008 to teach Contracts and Challenges to Legal Rationality as a Visiting Professor.

A member of the Israeli Bar since 1993, Professor Keren practiced law for ten years primarily in the areas of human rights and discrimination. She litigated and won landmark Supreme Court cases including one concerning discriminatory government funding of educational organizations, and another regarding conversions and freedom of religion. Several of those cases are now part of Hebrew University's constitutional law curriculum.

With a particular interest in the relationship between law and social change, Professor Keren's primary areas of scholarship are contract law, feminist jurisprudence, critical race theory and the emerging field of law and the emotions. Her book, Contract Law from a Feminist Perspective, was published in Hebrew by Sacher Institute for Legislative Research and Comparative Law (2005), and she is the author or co-author of numerous articles, written and published either in Hebrew or English. Her English publications have appeared in the California Law Review, Harvard Law Review, Minnesota Law Review, and Michigan Journal of Race and Law, among others. Her article published by the American University Journal of Gender, Social Policy and Law won the Polonsky Prize for Creativity and Originality in the Humanistic Disciplines. Her latest project is a book (co-authored with K. Abrams of UC Berkeley) which explores the interrelationship of law and hope.


Books and Chapters

CONTRACT LAW FROM A FEMINIST PERSPECTIVE (in Hebrew; The Harry and Michael Sacher Institute for Legislative Research and Comparative Law, Jerusalem, 2005)

Crossing Conceptual Borders: The Contribution of Chief Justice Barak to Contract Doctrine in THE JUDICIAL LEGACY OF AHARON BARAK 411 (2009)

Contractual Rape under the Anticipated Private Law Codification: Is There Anything New under the Sun? in STUDIES IN LAW, GENDER AND FEMINISM (D. Barak-Erez, ed.; 2007)


Consenting Under Stress, 64 HASTINGS LAW JOURNAL 679 (2013), reprinted in DEFENSE LAW JOURNAL 1 (November 2013)

Legal Hopes: Enhancing Resilience through the External Cultivation of Positive Emotions, 64 NORTHERN IRELAND LAW QUARTERLY 111 (with K. Abrams, 2013)

Considering Affective Consideration, 40 GOLDEN GATE LAW REVIEW 165 (2010)

Who's Afraid of Law and the Emotions,94 MINNESOTA LAW REVIEW 1997 (with K. Abrams; 2010)

Law in the Cultivation of Hope, 95 CALIFORNIA LAW REVIEW 319 (with K. Abrams; 2007)

Can Separate Be Equal? Intimate Economic Exchange and the Cost of Being Special, 119 HARVARD LAW REVIEW 19 (2006)

The Advantage of Having (Critical) Theory of Contracts (invited comment on Peter Linzer, E. Allan Farnsworth's Theory), 13 TEXAS WESLEYAN LAW REVIEW (2006)

Textual Harassment: A New Historicist Reappraisal of the Parol Evidence Rule with Gender in Mind, 13 AMERICAN UNIVERSITY JOURNAL ON GENDER, SOCIAL POLICY & LAW, 251 (2005)

'We Insist! Freedom Now': Does Contract Doctrine Have Anything Constitutional to Say?, 11 MICHIGAN JOURNAL OF RACE & LAW 133 (2005)

Allen D. Boyer, Sir Edward Coke and the Elizabethan Age, JOURNAL OF LAW, CULTURE AND THE HUMANITIES 401 (2005)

Equality within Contract Law: a Feminist Call, 31 MISHPATIM 269 (in Hebrew; 2000)