Gavison, Ruth (1945- ), Haim H. Cohn Professor of Human Rights Law at Hebrew University Law Faculty. Born in Jerusalem. Received an LLB (cum laude) in 1969, LLM (summa cum laude) in 1971, and BA in economics and philosophy (1970), all from Hebrew University. Law clerk at the Israel Supreme Court (Justice Benjamin Halevi). Admitted to the Israeli bar in 1971. In 1975 she received a D.Phil. in legal philosophy from Oxford University. Her dissertation (Legal Protection of Privacy) was written under the supervision of H.L.A. Hart.
Teaching at the
One of the founders of the Association for Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI),its Chairperson for many years and President (1996-1999).Published Human Rights in Israel (1995) and edited a three volume reader on Human Rights.
Since 1997 a member of International Commission of Jurists.
A major voice on human rights and constitutional issues and critic of judicial activism trends and the piecemeal constitution developed in
In 1999-2001 held a dialogue with Rabbi Yaacov Medan which culminated in the publication of A foundation for a New Covenant between Jews on Issues of State and Religion in
Gavison has written extensively on the meaning and justification of
Won the Zeltner Prize for legal research in 1997; the Avihai prize (with R. Medan) in 2001; Jerusalem Toleration prize in 2002; and the EMET prize for law in 2003.Awarded a doctor honoris causa from the JTS in 2003.
A frequent contributor to the written and electronic media and a speaker in professional and public gatherings.
Other publications include "Privacy and the Limits of Law" (1980);Administrative Discretion in the Enforcement of the Criminal law: The Power of the Attorney-General to Stay Criminal Proceedings (1991); and"Feminism and the Private-Public Distinction" (1992). She edited Issues in Contemporary Legal Philosophy: The Influence of H.L.A. Hart
PROFESSIONAL CURRICULUM VITAE
1970: Clerk to Justice B. Halevi,
1971: Admitted to the Israeli Bar
From 1969, teaching appointments, Faculty of Law, HU
1978‑1980: Visiting Associate Professor of Law,
From 1984: Incumbent, Haim H. Cohn Chair for Human Rights, HU
From 1990: Full Professor, Faculty of Law, HU
1990‑1991: Visiting Professor of Law,
1998-99: Fellow, Center for Human Values,
Philosophy of law, Human Rights, Law and Morals, Law and Society, State and religion; Law, Democracy and Civil Society (with Professor S.N. Eisenstadt); Law and….; Democracy and Human Rights in
Metzilah - Center for Zionist, Jewish, Liberal and Humanist Thought:
Since 2005 - founding President
Association for Civil Rights in
1976‑1978, 1982‑1984, 1986‑1987, 1992-94: Chairperson.
1993-1998, 2001-2003:Chair, Academic Committee
1993-1998:Member, Executive board
1983-1990:Fellow, the Van Leer Institute in
1993-1998:Member, Executive Board, Jerusalem Institute for
Since 1994:Member, academic committee, Mishkenot Shaananim
Since 1997: member, International Commission of Jurists
1997-2003: Senior Fellow, Israel Democracy Institute
Since 2001:Member of the Presidium of Yahad Council (Secular-religious council)
1999-2001: IDI, head, a Jewish-Arab dialogue group (proceedings of meetings online in IDI site)
1999-2002:(together with Rav. Y. Medan), work towards a new understanding between secular and religious Jews in
2000-2002: IDI, head, a working group on social and economic tensions in
2002: Chair, working group on Jewish identities,
March 2005 - : Senior Consultant to the constitutional process in the Knesset.
1976: Member, The Kahan Committee on Privacy (generated
1983: Member, committee on the privacy of information in governmental data‑banks (chair: H. Klugman) (Generated an amendment to the privacy law.)
1987‑1990 Member, a public committee on orthodox‑secular relationships in
1994-1997 Member, National Committee for Scientific and Technological Infrastructure
1996- 1997 Member, Zadok committee on press laws
1997 - 1998 Member, Shamgar Committee on the Appointment of the Attorney-General and Related Issues.
Dec 2003- Jan 2004:Member, Committee to appoint the AG
Since 1983, a frequent and regular contributor to the national press and the electronic media on issues of law, human rights, democracy and Israeli society.
Prizes and Awards
1997 - Zeltner Prize for Legal Research.
1999 – (With ACRI) The Bar Association Prize
2000 – Recognition by the Right to Know Association
2001 – HU rector prize for research and teaching
2001 - Avi-Hai prize for the New Covenant between Secular and religious Jews (with R. Medan).
2002 – The
2002 – Toleration Association Award (with R. Medan)
2003 – E.M.E.T prize in Law
2003: Honorary Doctorate, Jewish Theological Seminary
1. Discretion in Law Enforcement: The Power of the Attorney General to Stay Criminal Proceedings,
2. Human Rights in
3. The Constitutional revolution: A reality or a Self-Fulfilling Prophecy?1998(Heb).
5. (With Issam Abu Riyya), The Jewish-Arab Rift in
6. (With M. Kremnitzer and Y. Dotan), Judicial Activism For and Against: The Role of The Supreme Court in Israeli SocietyMagnes Press 2000 (Heb)
7. (With R. Y. Medan), Foundations to A New Covenant on State and Religion Issues in Israel, Hebrew, 2003.(Hebrew and English short versions available at http://www.gavison-medan.org.il)
8. Constitutional protection of Human Rights, forthcoming 2005 (Heb)
1. Civil Rights in
2. Issues in Contemporary Legal Philosophy: The Influence of H.L.A. Hart
3. (With M. Kremnitzer) Eighty to Shimon Agranat
4. The Freedom to Believe: Essays in Memory of Chamman P. Shelach ACRI and Poalim Library, 1990 (Heb)
5. Human Rights in Israel: A Reader (3 vols) (1991-92) (Heb)
6. (With Daphna Hacker), The Jewish-Arab Rift in
Articles(major works are marked by *)
1. 'Offences of Moral Turpitude and Disqualification for Public Office',1 Mishpatim 1968 176-182 (Heb)
2. 'The Pardon Act, 1967: A Further Note',2 Mishpatim 1969218-220 (Heb)
3.'The Duty of the High Court of Justice (HCJ) to Gove Reasoned Decisions', 2 Mishpatim 1970 84-95 (Heb)
4.'The Relationships between written and unwritten sources of law”, Israeli reports to the 8th international congress of comparative law (1971) 36-53.
5.'Section 15 of the Commissions of Enquiry Act and Judicial Review', 6 Mishpatim 1976 548-561 (Heb).
6.Comparative Analysis of Privacy Laws in Various Countries, The Kahan Report on Privacy1976 8-22, 33-36 (Heb).
7. Should We Have a general Right to privacy in
*8. 'The Enforcement of Morals and the Status of the Principle of Liberty' , 27 Iyun 274‑294 (1976‑77); published also as Thought, Language and Society: Essays in Memory of Y. Bar Hillel (Magnes 1977), 274‑294 (Heb).
9. 'Enforcement of Morals, Breach of Promise to Marry and the Duty to Give Reasoned Decisions',8 Mishpatim 1978 282-301 (Heb).
10.The Minimal Area of privacy Protection –
*11. 'Aspects of the Enforcement of Morals in Modern Society: A Response to Professor Shellef', Iyyun 281978282-301 (Heb).
13. “Privacy and Computerized Systems”, 1 Information Privacy 270-272 (1979)
14. (With A Margalit and Edna Ullman-Margalit), “Causal Over-determination: Resolution of a Puzzle”, 37 Philosophical Studies 381-390 (1980)
15. “M.R. Cohen: An Introductory Note”, 16 Isr.L.Rev. 273-281 (1981)
16. Introduction to the Hebrew edition of HLA Hart's Law,
*17. 'Privacy and the Limits of Law', 89 Yale L.J. 421‑471 (1980); reprinted in F.D. Schoeman (ed), Philosophical Dimensions of Privacy: An Anthology, Cambridge U.P. 1984, 346‑402.
*18. Introduction, Civil Rights in
*19. 'Prohibition of Privacy Invading Publications: The Right to Privacy and the Public's Right to Know', Civil Rights in
*20. 'Natural Law, Positivism and the Limits of Jurisprudence ‑ A Modern Round' (Book Review of Raz's The Authority of Law and Finnis's Natural Law and Natural Rights), 91 Yale L.J. 1250‑1285 (1982).
*21. 'Information Control: Availability and Exclusion', ch. 5 in Public and Private in Social Life (eds S.I. Benn and G.F. Gaus) Croom Helm 1983, 113‑134.
22. A Tribute to Ch. Perelman, 19 Isr.L.Rev. 5-9 (1984)
*23. 'Abolition of the Mejelle: Custom and the Fiqe Principles', 14 Mishpatim 325‑366 (1985)(Heb).
*24. 'The Controversy over
25.‘Human Rights and Democracy’, Skira Hodshit 1985, 10, reprinted in Gavison and Schneidor (eds.), Human Rights in Israel – A Reader, vol. 1 pp. 25-34 (Hebrew).
*26. '20 Years to the Yardor Decision ‑ The Right to Be Elected and the Lessons of History', Eighty to Shimon Ag
*27. 'Custom in Law Enforcement: The Power of the Attorney General to Stay Criminal Proceedings', 21 Isr.L.Rev. 333‑357 (1986).
28. Introduction to Gavison (ed.) Issues in Contemporary Legal Philosophy: The Influence of H.L.A. Hart,(OUP 1987) 1-5.
29.'The Nature of Legal Theory – A Comment on Dworkin', in 28 supra, pp. 21-34.
30. ‘Privacy’, in Blackwell Encyclopedia of Political Thought, Blackwell 1987, 400-401.
31. ‘Freedom of Expression, State Security, and Nuclear Capacity’, Proceedings of an International Conference on Freedom of Expression and State Security, 1989.
*32. 'The Implications of Jurisprudential Theories For Judicial Election, Selection and Accountability', 61 U.S.C.L.Rev. 2701‑ 2746 (1988).
33. '40 Years to
34. Law and Politics:A Programmatic Analysis, Van Leer, 1990
35. Introduction, Gavison (ed.) The Right to Believe, 1990,7-22.(Heb)
36. 'The Right to a Hearing, Equality and the AG',(1990) Iyyunei Mishpat (Heb)
*37. 'Legal Theory and the Role of Rules', 14 Harvard J. Law and Public Policy, 727-770 (1991)
*38.'Too Early for a Requiem: Warren and B
*39. 'Feminism and the Private-Public Distinction', 45 Stan.L.Rev. 1-45 (1992).
*40. 'State and religion: Separation and Privatization', 2 Mishpat u-Mimshal, 55-96 (Heb) 1993
*41."A Jewish and Democratic State - Political Identity, Ideology and Law", Iyunei Mishpat19, 1995, 631-682 (Hebrew).
*42. "Legal Systems and Public Attitudes During Negotiations Towards T
*43. "The Attorney General: A Critical Look at Some New Trends", 5Plilim 1996, 27-120 (Hebrew).
*44. "(Public) Law and (Private?) Religion", in John Tasioulas (ed), Laws, Values and Social Practices,
*45. "The Constitutional Revolution: Not A Reality But an Attempt At Self-Fulfilling Prophecy" 1977, 28 Mishpatim 23-147 (Hebrew)
46."Silencing Speech and the Limits of Law", R. Post(ed) Censorship and Silencing: Practices of Cultural regulation (1998).
*48. "Holmes’ Heritage: Living Greatly in the Law ", 1998 78 B.U.L.Rev. 843-883
49. “A Constitutional Revolution?”, in Gambaro A., Rabello A.M. (eds.) Toward a New European Ius Commune, 1998
*50. “Jewish and Democratic? A Rejoinder to the Ethnic Democracy debate”, 1999 4(1) Israel Studies, 44-72
*51. “The Role of Courts in Rifted Democracies”, 33 Isr. L.Rev., 216-258 (1999)
52. “Does Equality Require Integration? The Jaffa School Case” a policy paper, The Center of Study of Arab Society, Beit Berl 1999 (in Hebrew)
*53. “Does Equality Require Integration: A Case Study” (an expanded and modified version of 52) 2000 3 Democratic Culture, 37-88.
*54. “Zionism in Israel? Comments on Qaadan”, Mishpat u-mimshal 6(1): 25-51 (2001), (in Hebrew)
*55. (With Or Scwartz), “Residential Discrimination and Discrimination: The US experience” Iyyunei Mishpat 25(1):73-142 (2001) (in Hebrew)
*56. (With Allan Shapiro), Introduction to the Hebrew Edition of the Federalist Papers, Shalem 2001 (In hebrew). 2002, 11-72.
*57. The Lessons of The Federalist and Israel’s Constitution, Tchelet 11, 2001, 21-27 (Heb), adapted as: A Constitution For Israel? Lessons from the American Experiment”, 12 Azure (2002), 133-192.
58. 'On Human Rights and Prayer in the Kotel'' 1 Masechet 2002, 161-194 (Heb)
59. 'Yes to a Jewish Public Sphere', Meimad 24, 2002, 7-11. (Heb)
*60. “What Belongs in a Constitution?” in Stefan Voigt and Hans Wagener (eds.), Constitutions, Markets and the Law, Elgar, Cheltenham, 2002, 1-25. A slightly abridged version appeared in 13 CPE (Constitutional Political Economy) 2002, 89-105.
*61. “The Relationships between Civil and Political and Social and Economic Rights”, in Coicaud et al (eds.) Globalization of Human Rights, UNU Press 2003, 23-55.
a modified version is published in Hebrew: Rabin and Shani (eds.) Social, Economic and Cultural Rights in Israel, 2004.
*62. (With Eitan Levontin), “On the (non) Bindingness of the opinions of the Attorney-General, in A. Barak (ed.) 2003, Book in honor of M. Shamgar, Vol. 1, 221-286. (Heb)
*63. ‘The Jewish State: Legitimacy and Character’ (Hebrew), Tchelet 13, 2002, 50-88; 'The Jews’ Right to Sovereignty', 15 Azure (2003) English, 70-108.
64. 'Privacy', The New Encyclopedia of the Social Sciences 2002
*65. ‘Constitutions and Political reconstruction? Israel’s Quest for a Constitution’, International Sociology 18(1) 55-73, 2003
66. an interview on jewdiasim zionesiom and Israel, thoughts of Israel, the educaitain department of the jewish agency 203-224 (2003) Hebrew
66. 'The Significance of Israel in Modern Jewish Identities’, in Ben Rephael and others (eds.) Contemporary Jewries: Convergence and Divergence, Brill, 2003, 118-129. In Hebrew: In Bareli (ed) Iyunim Bitkumat Yisrael, 2003
67. “Implications of the Jewishness of the State to Immigration”, 2003, Heb, 27 Meimad, 4-7
68. "Neve Shalom: An Island of Co-existence in a Sea of Conflict: Lessons to the Educational System” (Hebrew) in D. Avnon (ed.), Citizen's Language in Israel, Magnes, Jerusalem 111-160, 2005; English version: http://www.ratio.huji.ac.il/dp.php, DP 379
*69. "Meaning and Implications of The Jewishness of Israel", in Ravitzky and Stern (eds.) The Jewishness of Israel, 107-178, IDI 2007 (Hebrew)
*70. Legislatures and the Phases and Components of Constitutionalism, in Bauman and Kahana (eds.), The Least Examined Branch: The Role of Legislatures in the Constitutional State (Cambridge, Cambridge UP) 2006, 198.
*71. Legislatures and the Quest for a Constitution: The Case of Israel, 11:2 Review of Constitutional Studies, 345-400 (2006)
72. "On the Future of the Relationships between Jews and Arabs in Israel", in Reiter I. (ed), Dilemmas in Jewish-Arab Relations in Israel, (Schoken 2005) 175-189 (Heb).
73. War and the Rule of (International) Law in the 21st century – Lessons from Israel", Democracy and Security 1:119-126 (2006)
*74. Postscript to the 2nd edition of HLA Hart's Law, Liberty and Morality in Hebrew, 2006, 118-145.
*75. Where there is no vision, The People Cast off Restraint: A meta-purpose for Israel and Its Implications, (Hebrew), The Neaman Institute, Haifa, 2006; translated into the English: 2007
76. "Can There be a Dialogue between Religious and Secular Jews in Israel? The Contribution of R. David Hayim Halevi, in Book in Memory of H.D. Halevi (N. Zohar and A. Sagi eds.) Hartman, 69-86 Hebrew 2007
*77. “Law, Adjudication, Human Rights and Society”, 40 Isr.L.Rev. (2007) 31-55.
*78. “Days of Worship and Days of Rest: The Case of Israel”, in Brugger W. and M. Karayanni (eds.) Religion in the Public Sphere: A Comparative Analysis of German, Israeli, American and International Law, Springer 2007, pp. 379-414.
79. A talk with Rabbi Medan on law abiding, in "the Storm of the disengagement from Gaza", Yideot Achronot 142-161 Hebrew (2007)
80. Five questions in Legal Philosophy
81. With Nahshon Perez, Days of Rest in Multicultural Societies: Private, Public, Separate? In Law and Religion in Theoretical and Historical Context, 186- 213 (Cane Peter, Carolyn Evans and Zoe Robinson ed., 2008)
1. Amnon Rubinstein, The Enforcement of Morals in a Secular Society, 7 Mishpatim 353-363 (Heb)
2. R. Samek, The legal Point of View, 1978 28 Iyun, 77-84 (Heb)
3. R. Dworkin’s taking Rights Seriously, 13 Isr.L.Rev. 389-397 (1979)
4. M. Negbi’s Justice Under Occupation, 17 Isr.L.Rev. 234-237 (1982)
*5. 'Importance in Philosophy: The Work of J.S. Mill' (book review of 2 books), 34 Iyun, 96-111 (1985)
6. Stewart (ed.), Law, Morality and Rights, 20 Isr.L.Rev. 107-108 (1985)
7. Detmold’s The Unity of Law and Morality: A Refutation of legal Positivism, 21 Isr.L.Rev. 113-117 (1986)
8. White’s Grounds of Liability: An Introduction to the Philosophy of Law, 21 Isr.L.Rev. 220-224 (1986)
9. J. Sklar’s legalism, 8 History of European ideas, 771-773 (1987)
10. Dworkin’s A Matter of Principle, 22 Isr.L.Rev.
11. Brian Bix’s Law, language and Interpretation, Isr.L.Rev. 1994
12. Eliezer Ben Refael, Jewish Identitites, Israeli Sociology (2002) Heb
13. Can The Courts Bring Social Change?, 2 Ma'asei Mishpat 2009, 15-32 (Heb) [on Gerald N. Rosenberg, The Hollow Hope: Can Courts Bring about Social Change? (2nd ed., 2008)]
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