This Article focuses on the legal treatment of retaliatory harassment claims. It argues that retaliatory harassment is an often misunderstood and underanalyzed concept in the law of workplace harassment. This Article seeks to distinguish the legal treatment of retaliatory harassment from sexual harassment. Part I of this Article describes the use of harassment as a method of enforcing workplace norms; it details how harassment is used not just to further a worker's own individual sexist (or racist) agenda, but how it is used to keep women (and minority groups) in subordinate positions. Part II describes the current legal frameworks for analyzing workplace harassment cases. Part III discusses the limits of the current frameworks. Part IV proposes the creation of an independent cause of action for retaliatory harassment and describes how such a claim would operate.
Rhonda Reaves, Retaliatory Harassment: Sex and the Hostile Coworker as the Enforcer of Workplace Norms, 2007 Mich. St. L. Rev. 403 (2007)