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Author: Tochi Onyebuchi

Gravity’s Rainbow: A Remembrance of Jackson Alberts, CLS ‘15

Jackson Alberts and friends. Photo provided by Tochi Onyebuchi. Jackson was the first guy I ever saw talk back to a law professor. Not respond. But talk back. Where we stammered, he bantered. Where we stumbled, he danced. That isn’t to say he was a good law student. It is more to say he enjoyed hearing himself talk. Already, that’s two things we had in common. It was Thursday evening my time, afternoon his, when an email from the Dean of our law school was sent informing us of the passing of Jackson Alberts, CLS ’15. He had been...

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The Kids Are Alright: Reflections on Law School

I’d received the news by phone. I was in Atlanta at the time, away from my family, when Mom called to let me know I’d received some massive blue box in the mail. It wasn’t a slim envelope, so we both immediately knew the thing’s import. I’d barely hung up the phone when I’d started getting questions from friends, acquaintances, family of friends, friends of family, family of acquaintances, acquaintances of acquaintances, varied in wording, but all carrying the same DNA: “Do you think I should go to law school?” Some of these people have already […]

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State of the Union

Illustrated by Minji Reem The place where I watched my first sunset of the New Year is called Constitution Square. Over the past few years, benches and a pathway have sprouted. Bounding the lot is a small plaza with a hair salon on one end, a massage parlor, an organic food spot, a gun store, a driver’s ed shingle and Ming Moon, our local Chinese restaurant. Further down the line is a bar and a group of sandwich shops. And across the lot from those, a dentist’s office next to a Century realty shop, a small community bank and...

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The Plight of the Gentile, Or How to Deal with the Effects of Tear Gas

The night of November 24, 2014, I was 3,000 miles away from home. I’d had the Guardian Liveblog of the Ferguson Grand Jury proceedings up, and I contemplated powering through the night, despite my 8am class the next morning. But I fell asleep. Even knowing how the movie would end, I woke up the morning of November 25 hurting. All day, on the metro on my way to class, then back home upon discovering that class had been cancelled, I fought tears. If I wept on […]

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Deus ex Machina

The whine of a 56k modem signals for me the beginning of an age. An awkward, rocky beginning of single landlines and “Get off the Internet; I’m tryna make a call!” Geocities webpages. Neon font. Crudely embedded images in Metallica tribute pages. At that point, DSL and cable modems belonged to households outside our tax bracket, so time spent on the Internet was precious, sometimes transgressive. The whine of a 56k modem will always be attached to an obsession with Dragonball Z, music videos with the aerial acrobatics of snowboarders set to Korn and Limp Bizkit, […]

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Gravity’s Rainbow: A Remembrance of Jackson Alberts, CLS ‘15

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