Author: Hillsdale College Politics Faculty
Publisher: Hillsdale College
Release Date: 2012
Featuring 113 primary source documents, The U.S. Constitution: A Reader was developed for teaching the core course on the U.S. Constitution at Hillsdale College. Divided into eleven sections with introductions by members of Hillsdales Politics Department faculty, readings cover: -the principles of the American founding; -the framing and structure of the Constitution; -the secession crisis and the Civil War; -the Progressive rejection of the Constitution; and -the building of the administrative state based on Progressive principles. Americas Founders created a form of government which had, in the words of James Madison, "no model on the face of the earth." Its moral foundation is in the Declaration of Independence and its principle of equal natural rights. Under the Constitution, government was to be limited to protecting those rights. In recent decades, the way our government operates has departed from the Constitution. Government has become less limited, and our liberties less secure. At the same time, true civic education in America--education in the Constitution--has largely died out. We at Hillsdale College see it as one of our highest duties to reverse this.
Author: Akhil Reed Amar
Publisher: Random House
Release Date: 2012-02-29
In America’s Constitution, one of this era’s most accomplished constitutional law scholars, Akhil Reed Amar, gives the first comprehensive account of one of the world’s great political texts. Incisive, entertaining, and occasionally controversial, this “biography” of America’s framing document explains not only what the Constitution says but also why the Constitution says it. We all know this much: the Constitution is neither immutable nor perfect. Amar shows us how the story of this one relatively compact document reflects the story of America more generally. (For example, much of the Constitution, including the glorious-sounding “We the People,” was lifted from existing American legal texts, including early state constitutions.) In short, the Constitution was as much a product of its environment as it was a product of its individual creators’ inspired genius. Despite the Constitution’s flaws, its role in guiding our republic has been nothing short of amazing. Skillfully placing the document in the context of late-eighteenth-century American politics, America’s Constitution explains, for instance, whether there is anything in the Constitution that is unamendable; the reason America adopted an electoral college; why a president must be at least thirty-five years old; and why–for now, at least–only those citizens who were born under the American flag can become president. From his unique perspective, Amar also gives us unconventional wisdom about the Constitution and its significance throughout the nation’s history. For one thing, we see that the Constitution has been far more democratic than is conventionally understood. Even though the document was drafted by white landholders, a remarkably large number of citizens (by the standards of 1787) were allowed to vote up or down on it, and the document’s later amendments eventually extended the vote to virtually all Americans. We also learn that the Founders’ Constitution was far more slavocratic than many would acknowledge: the “three fifths” clause gave the South extra political clout for every slave it owned or acquired. As a result, slaveholding Virginians held the presidency all but four of the Republic’s first thirty-six years, and proslavery forces eventually came to dominate much of the federal government prior to Lincoln’s election. Ambitious, even-handed, eminently accessible, and often surprising, America’s Constitution is an indispensable work, bound to become a standard reference for any student of history and all citizens of the United States.
Author: Dr. Larry Arnn
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Release Date: 2013-10-08
Today the integrity and unity of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution are under attack by the Progressive political movement. And yet, writes Larry P. Arnn: “The words of the Declaration of Independence ring across the ages. The arrangements of the Constitution have a way of organizing our actions so as to produce certain desirable results, and they have done this more reliably than any governing instrument in the history of man. Connect these arrangements to the beauty of the Declaration and one has something inspiring and commanding.” From Chapter 2, The Founders’ Key Dr. Arnn, president of Hillsdale College, reveals this integral unity of the Declaration and the Constitution. Together, they form the pillars upon which the liberties and rights of the American people stand. United, they have guided history’s first self-governing nation, forming our government under certain universal and eternal principles. Unfortunately, the effort to redefine government to reflect “the changing and growing social order” has gone very far toward success. Politicians such as Franklin Roosevelt found ways to condemn and discard the Constitution and to redefine the Declaration to justify government without limit. As a result, both documents have been weakened, their influence diminished, and their meaning obscured—paving the way for the modern administrative state, unaccountable to the will of the people. The Founders’ Key is a powerful call to rediscover the connection between these two mighty documents, and thereby restore our political faith and revive our free institutions.
Author: Roberta Baxter
Publisher: Cherry Lake
Release Date: 2014-08-01
Genre: Juvenile Nonfiction
This book relays the factual details of the creation of the U.S. Constitution. The narrative provides multiple accounts of the event, and readers learn details through the point of view of a serving girl at a Pennsylvania boardinghouse, a law clerk in the state of Virginia, and an apprentice printer. The text offers opportunities to compare and contrast various perspectives in the text while gathering and analyzing information about a historical event.
Author: Garrett Epps
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Release Date: 2013-09-19
"The United States is the only nation in the world in which political leaders, judges and soldiers all swear allegiance not to a king or a people but to a document, the Constitution. The Constitution today, however, is much revered but little read. . Readers of AMERICAN EPIC will never think of the Constitution in quite the same way again. Garrett Epps, a legal scholar who is also a journalist and writer of prize-winning fiction, takes readers on a literary tour of the Constitution, finding in it much that is interesting, puzzling, praiseworthy, and sometimes hilarious. Reading the Constitution like a literary work yields a host of meanings that shed new light on what it means to be an American"--
Author: Michael Cannon Rea
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield
Release Date: 1997
The only anthology available on material constitution, this book collects important recent work on well known puzzles in metaphysics and philosophy of mind. The extensive, clearly written introduction helps to make the essays accessible to a wide audience.
Author: Ronald J. Pestritto
Publisher: Lexington Books
Release Date: 2008-05-02
American Progressivism is a one-volume edition of some of the most important essays, speeches, and book excerpts from the leading figures of national Progressivism. It is designed for classroom use, includes an accessible interpretive essay, and introduces each selection with a brief historical and conceptual background. The introductory essay is written with the student in mind, and addresses the important characteristics of Progressive thought and the role of Progressives in the development of the American political tradition. Students of American political thought, American politics, American history, the presidency, Congress, and political parties will find this reader to be an invaluable source for insight into Progressivism.
Author: Richard Beeman
Release Date: 2010-08-31
Genre: Political Science
What is the President, Congress, and the Supreme Court really allowed to do? This unique and handy guide includes the documents that guide our government, annotated with accessible explanations from one of America's most esteemed constitutional scholars. Known across the country for his appearance on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, Professor Richard Beeman is one of the nation's foremost experts on the United States Constitution. In this book, he has produced what every American should have: a compact, fully annotated copy of the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution and amendments, all in their entirety. A marvel of accessibility and erudition, the guide also features a history of the making of the Constitution with excerpts from The Federalist Papers and a look at crucial Supreme Court cases that reminds us that the meaning of many of the specific provisions of the Constitution has changed over time. "Excellent . . . valuable and judicious." -Jill Lepore, The New Yorker
Author: David J. Bodenhamer
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Release Date: 2018
"Though the U.S. Constitution was ratified in 1788, its impact on our lives is as recent as today's news. Claims and counterclaims about the constitutionality of governmental actions are a habit of American politics. This document, which its framers designed to limit power, often has made political conflict inevitable. It also has accommodated and legitimized the political and social changes of a vibrant, powerful democratic nation. A product of history's first modern revolution, the Constitution embraced a new formula for government: it restrained power on behalf of liberty, but it also granted power to promote and protect liberty. The U.S. Constitution: A Very Short Introduction explores the major themes that have shaped American constitutional history-- federalism, the balance of powers, property, representation, equality, rights, and security. Informed by the latest scholarship, this book places constitutional history within the context of American political and social history. We do not operate today under the same Constitution created by our founding fathers or the Constitution as completed by the Bill of Rights in 1791 or even the one revised by the Reconstruction amendments. Nor are we the same nation. As our circumstances have changed, so has our Constitution.Today we face serious challenges to the nation's constitutional legacy. Endless wars, a sharply divided electorate and deadlocked government, economic inequality, immigration, cybersecurity and privacy, and foreign interference in the nation's democratic processes, among a host of other issues, have placed demands on government and on society that test our constitutional values. Understanding how the Constitution has evolved will help us adapt its principles to the challenges of our age"--
Author: Larry P. Arnn
Release Date: 2004-01-01
Larry P. Arnn, the President of Hillsdale College, traces the history of education from the founding of the U.S. Office of Education (based on the Prussian system) in 1869 to the Higher Education Act of 1965 and its subsequent reauthorizations, to contemporary legislation. He connects these changes to fundamental shifts in our understanding of what education is, of the purpose and ends of government, and of what it means to be human. He offers insight into the idea of liberal education as it developed in Western civilization, marked by the confluence of biblical religion and Socratic philosophy.
Author: Michael Paulsen
Publisher: Basic Books
Release Date: 2017-01-03
From war powers to health care, freedom of speech to gun ownership, religious liberty to abortion, practically every aspect of American life is shaped by the Constitution. This vital document, along with its history of political and judicial interpretation, governs our individual lives and the life of our nation. Yet most of us know surprisingly little about the Constitution itself, and are woefully unprepared to think for ourselves about recent developments in its long and storied history. The Constitution: An Introduction is the definitive modern primer on the US Constitution. Michael Stokes Paulsen, one of the nation’s most provocative and accomplished scholars of the Constitution, and his son Luke Paulsen, a gifted young writer and lay scholar, have combined to write a lively introduction to the supreme law of the United States, covering the Constitution’s history and meaning in clear, accessible terms. Beginning with the Constitution’s birth in 1787, Paulsen and Paulsen offer a grand tour of its provisions, principles, and interpretation, introducing readers to the characters and controversies that have shaped the Constitution in the 200-plus years since its creation. Along the way, the authors provide correctives to the shallow myths and partial truths that pervade so much popular treatment of the Constitution, from school textbooks to media accounts of today’s controversies, and offer powerful insights into the Constitution’s true meaning. A lucid and engaging guide, The Constitution: An Introduction provides readers with the tools to think critically and independently about constitutional issues—a skill that is ever more essential to the continued flourishing of American democracy.
Author: Ray Raphael
Release Date: 2017-10-31
Politicians come and go, but the Constitution stands as the supreme law of the land. Setting forth the workings of our democracy, it is the bedrock document from which we derive our policies on topics as diverse and galvanizing as immigration, gun ownership, voting rights, taxation, policing, civil liberties, and war. In this indispensable edition, acclaimed historian and Constitutional expert Ray Raphael guides us through the origins, impact, and current relevance of the original text and all twenty-seven amendments. Here is the key historical context for issues in the news today—from the Electoral College to Washington gridlock, from peaceful protests to executive power. Thoughtful and nuanced, lively and highly readable, this annotated Constitution is for all of us to read and refer to—the ultimate political fact-checking source for every American.