Craig Evan Klafter (1958-2023)

I am very sorry to report that Craig Evan Klafter died yesterday.  I knew him best and respected him greatly from his lengthy and able service as Treasurer of the American Society for Legal History.

Craig's B.A. and M.A. were from the University of Chicago; his Ph.D. was from the University of Oxford. He began his academic career as a lecturer at the University of Manchester and then the University of Southampton.  Thereafter he moved to Boston University, where he held an appointment on the law faculty and served as Assistant to the President. Other administrative jobs in the academe followed, at the University of Northern Iowa, the University of British Columbia, Oxford Brookes University, the St. Catherine's College Foundation, and the American University of Myanmar, where he was Rector and Professor of History.  His publications include Reason Over Precedents: Origins of American Legal Thought (Praeger, 1993); "The Americanization of Blackstone's Commentaries," in Essays on English Law and the American Experience, ed. Elisabeth A. Cawthon and David E. Narrett (Texas A&M University Press, 1994); and "Myanmar, Rule of Law, and an Imperfect Inheritance," Fletcher Forum of World Affairs 44 (Winter 2020): 121-136.

A funeral service is scheduled for Thursday morning. Legal historians who would like to attend via Zoom may contact Craig's brother Jeffrey Klafter (

--Dan Ernst



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