Professor Johnson joined the UVic Faculty of Law in 2001, after 6 years on the Faculty at the University of New Brunswick. Before that, she clerked for Madame Justice Claire L’Heureux-Dubé at the Supreme Court of Canada, and completed her LLM and SJD at the University of Michigan. The work there resulted in her award-winning book, Taxing Choices: the Intersection of Class, Gender, Parenthood and the Law.
Her research interests are marked by interdisciplinary, and include judicial dissent, cinema as a site of inter-cultural legal encounter, the economic imaginary, Indigenous legal methodologies, and sexuality. A pioneer in Canadian law-and-film scholarship, she has written on such topics as same-sex family formation, colonialism, dissent, mothers and babies in prison, cinematic violence, the Western, affect and emotion, and Inuit cinema. She co-edited a special issue of The Canadian Journal of Women and the Law on “Law, Film and Feminism”, and has a blog dedicated to the same. Professor Johnson’s internationally acknowledged collaborative work on judicial dissent with Professor Marie-Claire Belleau (University of Laval), has been published nationally and internationally in both French and English. Their work, funded by the Social Science and Humanities Research Council, has also been translated into Russian. Professor Johnson has also been working for several years on a number of initiatives with the Indigenous Legal Research Unit. She has also worked on the development of the TRC-inspired blog #ReconciliationSyllabus.
Professor Johnson has taught courses in Criminal Law, Business Associations, Law-and-Film, Legal Theory, Legal Method, Legal Process, Law Legislation & Policy, Constitutional law, Civil Liberties, and Feminist Advocacy. She supervises graduate students in a variety of fields: veterans, restorative justice, embodiment, mediation, homelessness, and social enterprise.
Industry Expertise (3)
Areas of Expertise (9)
Sexuality and the Law
Feminism & Gender Studies
University of Michigan: J.D., Law 2000
University of Michigan: LL.M., Law 1995
University of Alberta: LL.B., Law 1991
University of Alberta: M.B.A., Business 1990
University of Calgary: B.Mus, Music 1985
Media Appearances (4)
Comment: Ghomeshi case raises disturbing legal issues
The R. vs. Ghomeshi judgment begins with the word “warning.” And although the warning is about the publication ban for two of the complainants, it might as well be an image of a dragon on a 14th-century map, scaring off those about to navigate the words of the judgment due to dangers that lie below the surface.
TRC offers a window of opportunity for legal education
In June 2015, after seven years of collecting evidence the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada released its 388-page executive summary, centred on the TRC’s 94 recommendations and written as a call to action.
Law schools across Canada debate how to enact TRC recommendations
The Globe and Mail
We are being asked how to build a multijuridical society,” said Rebecca Johnson, who co-founded the Reconciliation Syllabus and is a professor at UVic’s law school ...
Reconciliation not for the few, prof says"
A year after the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) issued a call to action, an open workshop at TRU Thursday drew about 120 people looking for ways to follow through in earnest.
Journeying North: Reflections on Inuit Stories as LawUniversity of Victoria Faculty of Law
2014 In the summer of 2012, Val Napoleon and Hadley Friedland ran an intensive Indigenous Law Research Unit (ILRU) at the University of Victoria Faculty of Law.
Reimagining ‘The True North Strong and Free’: Reflections on Going to the Movies with James Boyd WhiteMichigan Publishing
2014 In Living in a Law Transformed: Encounters with the Works of James Boyd White.
Justice and the Colonial Collision: Reflections on Stories of Intercultural Encounter in Law, Literature, Sculpture and FilmFoundations: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Law and Justice
2012 Communities, and particularly national communities, are constituted in part through narratives about their origin. In settler societies, originary stories of contact and arrival have played foundational roles in the national imaginary.
The Jane Doe Coffee Table Book about Rape: Reflections on Rebellious Writing and TeachingUniversity of Ottawa Press
2012 In Sexual Assault in Canada: Law, Legal Practice and Women’s Activism.
Strange Encounters: Exploring Law and Film in the Affective RegisterStudies in Law, Politics, and Society
2009 This paper argues that taking seriously the embodied and affective dimensions of thought is important in relation both to the critical and transformative possibilities of Law-and-Film scholarship.