This term, Powell’s first full term, extended from October 1972 to the summer of 1973, and presented the Court with a host of social and political issues, many of which remain contentious today. Abortion and obscenity are perhaps the most celebrated of these. But there were also questions of public school funding, public school desegregation, the rights of illegitimate children, alien rights, water rights, Congressional gerrymandering, gender based equal protection, and parental reimbursement for non-public education.
Almost two dozen complete case files from this historic term are now available online. Many of them have been added this month.