Gerald Wetlaufer

Professor of Law Emeritus

Professor Wetlaufer took emeritus status in 2014.  He joined the Iowa law faculty in 1985 after thirteen years of private practice and seven years as a partner with the Washington, DC, law firm of Wald, Harkrader & Ross. As a student at Yale Law School, he served as research and teaching assistant to Professor Alexander M. Bickel.

Areas of Expertise:

While in private practice, Professor Wetlaufer specialized in antitrust law and economics, including antitrust litigation attendant to numerous contested tender offers; plaintiffs' Title VII class actions seeking to desegregate the construction industries in Washington, DC; other forms of complex federal litigation and administrative representation; and complex negotiations.

Practice and Teaching:

Professor Wetlaufer's research and writings deal with the law of executive privilege; the various and often incompatible theoretical perspectives at work in contemporary American law (e.g., formalism, legal realism, legal process, the positivist/analytic tradition, law and economics, contemporary critical theory); the forms of legal argument; the rhetorics of negotiations; and the ethics of strategic behavior both in civil litigation and in negotiations. His courses included Civil Procedure, Theories of Law in Twentieth-Century America, The Rhetorics and Ethics of Negotiations, Legal Realism & Critical Legal Studies, and Law & Economics.



Rhetoric and Its Denial in Legal Discourse, 76 Virginia Law Rev. 1545-98 (1990)

The Ethics of Lying in Negotiations, 75 Iowa Law Rev. 1219-74 (1990)

The Limits of Integrative Bargaining, 85 Georgetown Law Rev. 369-94 (1996)

Systems of Belief in American Law, 49 American Univ. Law Rev. 1-80 (1999)

Areas of Expertise:


BA, Princeton University, 1967

JD, Yale Law School, 1972

Awards and Honors: