Anne Fleming ’05, a legal historian and professor at Georgetown University Law Center, died suddenly Aug. 26 from an embolism.
Fleming was a pathbreaking scholar whose article on the canonical contracts case on unconscionability doctrine, Williams v. Walker-Thomas Furniture Co., changed the way many taught it. Fleming’s prize-winning first book, “City of Debtors: A Century of Fringe Finance” (Harvard, 2018), explores the growth and regulation of small-dollar lending institutions in the United States over the 2oth century.
Her research interests included contract and commercial law, consumer finance, and American legal history, with a focus on the relationship between law and poverty. Fleming also had embarked on another book project, “Household Borrowing and Bankruptcy in Jim Crow America, 1920-1960.”
“Anne Fleming was the scholar, teacher, and colleague we should all hope to be—rigorous, insightful, empathetic, and kind. What she accomplished in a too-short career makes her loss even greater,” said HLS Professor Bruce Mann, one of her mentors when she was a Climenko Fellow.
“Anne was brilliant, generous-minded and wryly hilarious. As a colleague and friend in the Climenko program, she regularly gave transformatively insightful comments on others’ work even as she honed her own scholarship. Her students relied on her levelheaded advice and profound commitment to their success.
When Anne talked, people listened. And even as her wisdom shone through in all she did, she also had unfailing comic timing and an acute sense of irony so welcome in the self-serious world of academia. We are all better for having known her and will miss her beyond words,” said Susannah Barton Tobin, ’04 managing director of the Climenko Fellowship Program at HLS, where Fleming had been a fellow in 2012.
Source: Harvard Law Bulletin