The Intuitive Psychologist Behind the Bench: Models of Gender Bias in Social Psychology and Employment Discrimination Law


*Correspondence concerning this article should be addressed to Linda Hamilton Krieger, University of California, Berkeley, School of Law (Boalt Hall), Berkeley, California 94720–7200 [e-mail:]. During the 2004–2005 academic year, Professor Krieger is a Research Fellow at the Radcliff Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts. During this period, correspondence should be addressed to Professor Krieger at the Institute at 34 Concord Avenue, Cambridge, MA, 02138 [e-mail:].


Courts make use of psychological theories, especially in cases involving discrimination. But the courts do not appear to be cognizant of recent advances in cognitive social psychology. Flawed intuitive psychological models presently limit the law's effectiveness in dismantling the maternal wall. By understanding how the courts operate, social engaged socially psychologists might work with civil rights lawyers to influence the system and make progress dismantling the maternal wall.