About


At Yale University, Lincoln Caplan is a Senior Research Scholar and an occasional Visiting Lecturer in Law at the law school, a Lecturer in English, and a Writing Tutor at Davenport College. He has written recently for The American Scholar and Harvard Magazine. He co-edited the Winter 2019 issue of Daedalus about Access to Justice.

He wrote about the Supreme Court as a member of the editorial board of The New York Times. He was also a staff writer for The New Yorker and an editor at U.S. News & World Report, where he oversaw U.S. News online and the magazine’s coverage of education.

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From 1998 until 2006, he was on the faculty of Yale Law School as the Knight Senior Journalist, where he was the founding editor and president of Legal Affairs magazine. Legal Affairs was a finalist for two National Magazine Awards (for General Excellence and for Public Interest) and won other national awards in journalism.

From July 2006 until July 2010, he was managing partner of SeaChange Capital Partners, a nonprofit finance firm he helped launch that is now a merchant bank for nonprofits across the social sector. In its first four years of operation, it raised philanthropic capital for nonprofit organizations involved in education reform and youth development.

He is the author of six books about law, including American Justice 2016: The Political Supreme Court, about the Court term ending in 2016. His other books are: The Insanity Defense and the Trial of John W. Hinckley, Jr., which (as excerpted in The New Yorker) won a Silver Gavel Award from the American Bar Association; The Tenth Justice: The Solicitor General and the Rule of Law, which was the first major book about that important post in the Justice Department and at the Supreme Court; An Open Adoption; Skadden: Power, Money, and the Rise of a Legal Empire, written with the support of a Guggenheim Fellowship and available in Chinese, Japanese, and Korean editions as well as English; and Up Against the Law: Affirmative Action and the Supreme Court.

A graduate of Harvard College magna cum laude, he attended Cambridge University in England as a Harvard Scholar and received his J.D. from Harvard Law School. He clerked for the chief justice of the Connecticut Supreme Court and worked as a management consultant for the Boston Consulting Group. He has been a White House Fellow, a Guggenheim Fellow, and a Fellow at Yale’s Whitney Humanities Center. He is a member of the editorial board of The American Scholar and a contributing editor of Harvard Magazine. He is a former member of the advisory board of the Pew Internet & American Life Project and the former senior editor at the Knight First Amendment Institute of Columbia University.