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Michael M. Oswalt

Michael M. Oswalt
Assistant Professor of Law

J.D., Duke University
M.T.S. (Master of Theological Studies), Duke University
B.A., Haverford College

Phone: (815) 753-2066
Room: 192C


Professor Michael M. Oswalt joined the NIU College of Law faculty in fall 2013 and teaches Torts, Labor Law, Employment Law, and Workers’ Compensation. His research focuses on the relationship between law and activism, particularly how legal and other regimes transform the possibilities for engagement in civic and institutional arenas, including the workplace. Professor Oswalt’s work has been published in the California Law Review, the NYU Review of Law and Social Change Harbinger, the UC Irvine Law Review, the Minnesota Law Review (with Catherine Fisk), the Duke Law Journal, and the Journal of Catholic Legal Studies. His most recent article, “The Right to Improvise in Low Wage Work,” considers the relationship between labor law and improvised collective activity in the modern service economy.

Professor Oswalt graduated from Haverford College in 2000 and has degrees in law and theology from Duke University. At Duke Law he was a member of the Duke Law Journal and served as Notes Editor for the Duke Journal of Gender Law and Policy. After law school he clerked on the United States Second Circuit Court of Appeals for Judge, now Justice, Sonia Sotomayor. Most recently Professor Oswalt was a law fellow for the Service Employees International Union where he provided counsel to a variety of low wage worker organizing campaigns.

Faculty News for Professor Oswalt


Law Reviews

  • The Right to Improvise in Low Wage Work, 38 Cardozo L. Rev. (forthcoming 2017).
    | SSRN |
  • Law and the Questions and Answers of Workplace Mobilization, 40 N.Y.U. Rev. L. & Soc. Change Harbinger 129 (2016).
    | SSRN |
  • Improvisational Unionism, 104 Calif. L. Rev. 597 (2016).
    | SSRN |
  • Automatic Elections, 4 U.C. Irvine L. Rev. 801 (2014).
    | SSRN | PDF |
  • Steeple Solidarity: Mainline Church Renewal and the Union Corporate Campaign, 50 J. Cath. Legal Stud. 227 (2011).
    | SSRN |
  • Preemption and Civic Democracy in the Battle Over Wal-Mart, 92 Minn. L. Rev. 1502 (2008) (with Catherine Fisk).
    | SSRN |
  • The Grand Bargain: Revitalizing Labor Through NLRA Reform and Radical Workplace Relations, 57 Duke L.J. 691 (2007).
    | SSRN |

Opinion Articles

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