We the People, Volume 2

Transformations
Author: Bruce Ackerman
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 0674003977
Category: History
Page: 528
View: 3542

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Volume 3, Publisher description: The Civil Rights Revolution carries Bruce Ackerman's sweeping reinterpretation of constitutional history into the era beginning with Brown v. Board of Education. From Rosa Parks's courageous defiance, to Martin Luther King's resounding cadences in "I Have a Dream," to Lyndon Johnson's leadership of Congress, to the Supreme Court's decisions redefining the meaning of equality, the movement to end racial discrimination decisively changed our understanding of the Constitution. Ackerman anchors his discussion in the landmark statutes of the 1960s: the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Voting Rights Act of 1965, and the Fair Housing Act of 1968. Challenging conventional legal analysis and arguing instead that constitutional politics won the day, he describes the complex interactions among branches of government--and also between government and the ordinary people who participated in the struggle. He showcases leaders such as Everett Dirksen, Hubert Humphrey, and Richard Nixon who insisted on real change, not just formal equality, for blacks and other minorities. The Civil Rights Revolution transformed the Constitution, but not through judicial activism or Article V amendments. The breakthrough was the passage of laws that ended the institutionalized humiliations of Jim Crow and ensured equal rights at work, in schools, and in the voting booth. This legislation gained congressional approval only because of the mobilized support of the American people--and their principles deserve a central place in the nation's history. Ackerman's arguments are especially important at a time when the Roberts Court is actively undermining major achievements of America' Second Reconstruction.

The Decline and Fall of the American Republic


Author: Bruce Ackerman
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 0674058399
Category: History
Page: 280
View: 4812

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Constitutional thought is currently dominated by heroic tales of the Founding Fathers — who built an Enlightenment machine that can tick-tock its way into the twenty-first century, with a little fine-tuning by the Supreme Court. However, according to Bruce Ackerman, the modern presidency is far more dangerous today than it was when Arthur Schlesinger published the Imperial Presidency in 1973. In this book, he explores how the interaction of changes in the party system, mass communications, the bureaucracy, and the military have made the modern presidency too powerful and a threat to liberal constitutionalism and democracy. Ackerman argues that the principles of constitutional legitimacy have been undermined by both political and legal factors. On the political level, by “government by emergency” and “government by public-opinion poll”; on the legal, by two rising institutions: The Office of Legal Counsel in the Department of Justice and the Office of the Presidential Counsel in the White House. Both institutions came out of the New Deal, but have gained prominence only in the last generation. Lastly, Ackerman kicks off a reform debate that aims to adapt the Founding ideal of checks-and-balances to twenty-first century realities. His aim is not to propose definitive solutions but to provoke a national debate on American democracy in its time of trouble.

Private Property and the Constitution


Author: Bruce Ackerman
Publisher: Yale University Press
ISBN: 0300158068
Category: Law
Page: 314
View: 9066

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I am deeply indebted to my research assistant, John Borgo, for an ongoing flow of criticism, as well as to my secretary, Diane McDougal, for typing a steady stream of second thoughts. Their work, as well as mine, was supported in part by the Law and Social Science Division of The National Science Foundation. The Foundation, however, should not be held responsible for the views expressed in this essay.I am also very grateful to my many friends at Yale and elsewhere who helped me with this book. But my debts here are so numerous and diverse as to defy a comprehensive and exact accountin

We the People, Volume 2

Transformations
Author: Bruce Ackerman
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 0674736621
Category: History
Page: 538
View: 402

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Constitutional change, seemingly so orderly, formal, and refined, has in fact been a revolutionary process from the first, as Bruce Ackerman makes clear in We the People, Volume 2: Transformations. The Founding Fathers, hardly the genteel conservatives of myth, set America on a remarkable course of revolutionary disruption and constitutional creativity that endures to this day. After the bloody sacrifices of the Civil War, Abraham Lincoln and the Republican Party revolutionized the traditional system of constitutional amendment as they put principles of liberty and equality into higher law. Another wrenching transformation occurred during the Great Depression, when Franklin Roosevelt and his New Dealers vindicated a new vision of activist government against an assault by the Supreme Court. These are the crucial episodes in American constitutional history that Ackerman takes up in this second volume of a trilogy hailed as “one of the most important contributions to American constitutional thought in the last half-century” (Cass Sunstein, The New Republic). In each case he shows how the American people—whether led by the Founding Federalists or the Lincoln Republicans or the Roosevelt Democrats—have confronted the Constitution in its moments of great crisis with dramatic acts of upheaval, always in the name of popular sovereignty. A thoroughly new way of understanding constitutional development, We the People, Volume 2: Transformations reveals how America’s “dualist democracy” provides for these populist upheavals that amend the Constitution, often without formalities. The book also sets contemporary events, such as the Reagan Revolution and Roe v. Wade, in deeper constitutional perspective. In this context Ackerman exposes basic constitutional problems inherited from the New Deal Revolution and exacerbated by the Reagan Revolution, then considers the fundamental reforms that might resolve them. A bold challenge to formalist and fundamentalist views, this volume demonstrates that ongoing struggle over America’s national identity, rather than consensus, marks its constitutional history.

Revolution by Judiciary

The Structure of American Constitutional Law
Author: Jed Rubenfeld
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 9780674017153
Category: Law
Page: 241
View: 7432

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Although constitutional law is supposed to be fixed and enduring, its central narrative in the twentieth century has been one of radical reinterpretation--Brown v. Board of Education, Roe v. Wade, Bush v. Gore. What, if anything, justifies such radical reinterpretation? How does it work doctrinally? What, if anything, structures it or limits it? Jed Rubenfeld finds a pattern in American constitutional interpretation that answers these questions convincingly. He posits two different understandings of how constitutional rights would apply or not apply to particular legislation. One is that a right would be violated if certain laws were passed. The other is that a right would not be violated. He calls the former "Application Understandings" and the latter "No-Application Understandings." He finds that constitutional law has almost always adhered to all of the original Application Understandings, but where it has departed from history, as it did in the Brown decision, it has departed from No-Application Understandings. Specifically, the Fourteenth Amendment did not prohibit racial segregation, so Rubenfeld argues that the Supreme Court had no problem reinterpreting it to prohibit it. It was a No-Application Understanding. This is a powerful argument that challenges current theories of constitutional interpretation from Bork to Dworkin. It rejects simplistic originalism, but restores historicity to constitutional theorizing.

We the People, Volume 3

The Civil Rights Revolution
Author: Bruce Ackerman
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 067441649X
Category: Law
Page: 432
View: 8760

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The Civil Rights Revolution carries Bruce Ackerman's sweeping reinterpretation of constitutional history into the era beginning with Brown v Board of Education. Laws that ended Jim Crow and ensured equal rights at work, in schools, and in the voting booth gained congressional approval only after the American people mobilized their support.

Constitutionalism

Philosophical Foundations
Author: Larry Alexander
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 9780521799997
Category: Law
Page: 319
View: 6977

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This specially commissioned volume examines the issue of constitutionalism.

Democracy and Distrust

A Theory of Judicial Review
Author: John Hart Ely
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 9780674196377
Category: Law
Page: 268
View: 8291

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Until now legal experts have proposed two basic approaches to the Constitution. The first, "interpretivism," maintains that we should stick as closely as possible to what is explicit in the document itself. The second, predominant in recent academic theorizing, argues that the courts should be guided by what they see as the fundamental values of American society. Mr. Ely demonstrates that both of these approaches are inherently incomplete and inadequate. --from publisher description.

Living Originalism


Author: Jack M. Balkin
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 0674063031
Category: Law
Page: 480
View: 551

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Originalism and living constitutionalism, often seen as opposing views, are not in conflict. So argues Jack Balkin, a leading constitutional scholar, in this long-awaited book. Step by step, Balkin shows how both liberals and conservatives play important roles in constitutional construction, and offers a way past the angry polemics of our era.

Social Justice in the Liberal State


Author: Bruce Ackerman
Publisher: Yale University Press
ISBN: 0300158076
Category: Political Science
Page: 405
View: 7692

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This essay has taken up much of my time, and more of my energy, for the past ten years. It has been impossible to be my friend during this period without enduring countless conversations and scribblings devoted to one or nother line of thought. As a result, my friends have contributed enormously to the final product. While I will refrain from a blow-by-blow account, this book would never have emerged without their ceaseless criticisms and encouragements.It is easier to be more specific in detailing my other debts. Judith Shklar, by her personal example, introduced me to the reality of political philosophy while I was a student of hers at Harvard College. Proceeding to the Yale Law School in the mid-1960s, I encountered a group of teachers who gave Shklar's message a new force: Alexander Bickel, Robert Bork, Guido Calabresi, Ronald Dworkin, Charles Reich. While these people were very different from one another, they convinced me that political action was futile without systematic reflection.

We the People, Volume 1

Foundations
Author: Bruce A. Ackerman
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 0674736591
Category: Law
Page: 384
View: 2233

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Bruce Ackerman offers a sweeping reinterpretation of our nation’s constitutional experience and its promise for the future. Integrating themes from American history, political science, and philosophy, We the People confronts the past, present, and future of popular sovereignty in America. Only this distinguished scholar could present such an insightful view of the role of the Supreme Court. Rejecting arguments of judicial activists, proceduralists, and neoconservatives, Ackerman proposes a new model of judicial interpretation that would synthesize the constitutional contributions of many generations into a coherent whole. The author ranges from examining the origins of the dualist tradition in the Federalist Papers to reflecting upon recent, historic constitutional decisions. The latest revolutions in civil rights, and the right to privacy, are integrated into the fabric of constitutionalism. Today’s Constitution can best be seen as the product of three great exercises in popular sovereignty, led by the Founding Federalists in the 1780s, the Reconstruction Republicans in the 1860s, and the New Deal Democrats in the 1930s. Ackerman examines the roles played during each of these periods by the Congress, the Presidency, and the Supreme Court. He shows that Americans have built a distinctive type of constitutional democracy, unlike any prevailing in Europe. It is a dualist democracy, characterized by its continuing effort to distinguish between two kinds of politics: normal politics, in which organized interest groups try to influence democratically elected representatives; and constitutional politics, in which the mass of citizens mobilize to debate matters of fundamental principle. Although American history is dominated by normal politics, our tradition places a higher value on mobilized efforts to gain the consent of the people to new governing principles. In a dualist democracy, the rare triumphs of constitutional politics determine the course of normal politics. More than a decade in the making, and the first of three volumes, this compelling book speaks to all who seek to renew and redefine our civic commitments in the decades ahead.

Law in Modern Society


Author: Roberto Mangabeira Unger
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 0029328802
Category: Law
Page: 309
View: 2195

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"Law in Modern Society" is a comparative study of the place of law in societies as well as a criticism of social theory. Under what conditions do different kinds of law emerge? What are the bases of the rule of law ideal that marks advanced liberal, capitalist societies? What can the study of law teach us about social hierarchy and moral vision in these societies, and, indeed, about the specificity of Western civilization? Why do we find it necessary to struggle for the rule of law and impossible to achieve it? What political possibilities are closed or opened by present-day changes in the established styles of legality and legal thought? Unger deals with these questions in a broad range of historical settings. But he also relates them to the central issues of social theory: the method of explanation, the conditions of social order, and the nature of 'modern' society. the book argues that to resolve its own internal dilemmas the science of society must once again become both metaphysical and political.

The Failure of the Founding Fathers

Jefferson, Marshall, and the Rise of Presidential Democracy
Author: Bruce A. Ackerman
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 9780674018662
Category: History
Page: 384
View: 2249

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Provides a new understanding of the early days of the Supreme Court and office of the President.

Constitutional Fate

Theory of the Constitution
Author: Philip Bobbitt
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199878587
Category: Political Science
Page: 304
View: 9228

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Here, Philip Bobbitt studies the basis for the legitimacy of judicial review by examining six types of constitutional argument--historical, textual, structural, prudential doctrinal, and ethical--through the unusual method of contrasting sketches of prominent legal figures responding to the constitutional crises of their day.

America's Unwritten Constitution

The Precedents and Principles We Live by
Author: Akhil Reed Amar
Publisher: Basic Books (AZ)
ISBN: 0465029574
Category: History
Page: 615
View: 2745

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A renowned constitutional scholar explores the little-understood relationship between the written Constitution and the many external factors that shape our interpretations of this foundational document.

Transforming India


Author: Sumantra Bose
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 0674728203
Category: Political Science
Page: 352
View: 1537

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A nation of 1.25 billion, India is the world's most diverse democracy. Drawing on his extensive fieldwork and experience of Indian politics, Sumantra Bose tells the story of democracy's evolution in India since the 1950s and describes the challenges it faces today: from poverty and inequality to Maoist revolutionaries and Kashmir secessionists.

Righteous Republic


Author: Ananya Vajpeyi
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 0674071832
Category: History
Page: 368
View: 7949

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What India’s founders derived from Western political traditions is widely understood. Less well-known is how India’s own rich knowledge traditions of 2,500 years influenced these men. Vajpeyi furnishes this missing account, showing how five founders turned to classical texts to fashion an original sense of Indian selfhood.

A People's History of the United States

1492-Present
Author: Howard Zinn
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317325303
Category: History
Page: 744
View: 4462

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This is a new edition of the radical social history of America from Columbus to the present. This powerful and controversial study turns orthodox American history upside down to portray the social turmoil behind the "march of progress". Known for its lively, clear prose as well as its scholarly research, A People's History is the only volume to tell America's story from the point of view of - and in the words of - America's women, factory workers, African-Americans, Native Americans, the working poor, and immigrant laborers. As historian Howard Zinn shows, many of America's greatest battles - the fights for fair wage, an eight-hour workday, child-labor laws, health and safety standards, universal suffrage, women's rights, racial equality - were carried out at the grassroots level, against bloody resistance. Covering Christopher Columbus's arrival through the Clinton years A People's History of the United States, which was nominated for the American Book Award in 1981, is an insightful analysis of the most important events in US history.