Gender and the tournament: Reinventing antidiscrimination law in an age of inequality

Naomi Cahn, June Carbone, Nancy Levit

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Since the 1970s, antidiscrimination advocates have approached Title VII as though the impact of the law on minorities and women could be considered in isolation. This Article argues that this is a mistake. Instead, Gender and the Tournament attempts to reclaim Title VII’s original approach, which justified efforts to dismantle segregated workplaces as necessary to both eliminate discrimination and promote economic growth. Using that approach, this Article is the first to consider how widespread corporate tournaments and growing gender disparities in the upper echelons of the economy are intrinsically intertwined, and how they undermine the core promises of antidiscrimination law. The Article draws on a case filed in 2014 challenging the “rank-and-yank” evaluation system at Microsoft, as well as social science literature regarding narcissism and stereotype expectations, to illustrate how consideration of the legitimacy of competitive pay for performance schemes is essential to combating the intrinsically gendered nature of advancement in the new economy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)425-488
Number of pages64
JournalTexas Law Review
Issue number3
StatePublished - Feb 2018

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the US-Israel Binational Science foundation (BSF), Jerusalem, Israel.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018, School of Law Publications. All right reserved.


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