ArticlesVolume 42, No. 3 (2019)

The Roots of Sexual Privacy: Warren and Brandeis & the Privacy of Intimate Life

Danielle Keats Citron

Morton & Sophia Macht Professor of Law, University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law

Abstract

It is lovely to be here, especially because, as a privacy scholar, I am a bit of an interloper with the IP crowd. Whenever anyone mentions IP, I think they mean “information privacy.” So, in this group of intellectual property scholars, I am surely an outlier as well. It is exciting to find a kindred spirit in Jennifer Rothman’s book, which conceptualizes privacy as centrally involved with the formation of identity.

What I am going to do is circle back to tell the story of Samuel Warren and Louis Brandeis, what they were doing in their famous law review article, how they broke new ground, and some of the history around the project and the writers themselves. Then, I am going to talk about sexual privacy, the focus on my current work.