Constitutional interpretation: the basic questions
Ronald Dworkin famously argued that fidelity in interpreting the Constitution as written calls for a fusion of constitutional law and moral philosophy. Barber and Fleming take up that call, arguing for a philosophic approach to constitutional interpretation. In doing so, they systematically critique the competing approaches - textualism, consensualism, originalism, structuralism, doctrinalism, minimalism, and pragmatism - that aim and claim to avoid a philosophic approach. Constitutional Interpretation: The Basic Questions illustrates that these approaches cannot avoid philosophic reflection and choice in interpreting the Constitution. Barber and Fleming contend that fidelity in constitutional interpretation requires a fusion of philosophic and other approaches, properly understood. Within such a fusion, interpreters would begin to think of text, consensus, intentions, structures, and doctrines not as alternatives to, but as sites of philosophic reflection about the best understanding of our constitutional commitments. Constitutional Interpretation: The Basic Questions examines the fundamental inquiries that arise in interpreting constitutional law. In doing so, the authors survey the controversial and intriguing questions that have stirred constitutional debate in the United States for over two centuries, such as: how and for what ends should governmental institutions and powers be arranged; what does the Constitution mean under general circumstances and how should it be interpreted during concrete controversies; and finally how do we decide what our constitution means and who ultimately decides its meaning.
What people are saying - Write a review
We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.
The Presuppositions of Constitutional Interpretation
The Principal Questions of Constitutional Interpretation
The Positive Constitutionalism of The Federalist
11 other sections not shown
Other editions - View all
abstract originalism American Constitutional answer approach to constitutional argued argument assume believe best understanding Bork broad originalists Brown Chapter claim conception of democracy concrete Congress Constitution's constitutional interpretation constitutional law constitutional meaning constitutional provisions constitutional text constitutional theory controversial critics debate decide decisions democratic deny Dred Scott Due Process Clause Equal Protection Clause federalism Federalist fidelity Fourteenth Amendment framers fusion of constitutional Harvard University Press homosexuals intentionalism intentionalist intentions interpret the Constitution John Hart Ely judges judicial minimalism Justice law and moral Law Review liberty living constitution major minimalism minor premise moral philosophy Ninth Amendment opinion Perry persons philosophic approach philosophic choices plain words Plessy political position Posner pragmatism pragmatists principles Publius's questions reason Rehnquist representative democracy responsible Ronald Dworkin Scalia segregation self-critical social consensus Sotirios Stephen Macedo structure substantive Sunstein supra note Supreme Court textualism things tion tional Whittington