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Original Intent and the Framers' Constitutionby Leonard Williams Levy
Synopses & Reviews
For more than two hundred years a debate has raged between those who believe that jurists should follow the original intentions of the Founding Fathers and those who argue that the Constitution is a living document subject to interpretation by each succeeding generation. The controversy has flared anew in our own time as a facet of the battle between conservatives and liberals. In Original Intent and the Framers' Constitution, the distinguished constitutional scholar Leonard Levy cuts through the Gordian Knot of claim and counterclaim with an argument that is clear, logical, and compelling. Rejecting the views of both left and right, he evaluates the doctrine of original intent by examining the sources of constitutional law and landmark cases. Finally, he finds no evidence for grounding the law in original intent. Judicial activism the constant reinterpretation of the Constitution he sees as inevitable.
Book News Annotation:
Debate continues over whether jurists should follow the original intentions of the Founding Fathers when they drafted the Constitution or whether the Constitution is a "living document," subject to interpretation by each generation. Constitutional scholar Levy evaluates the doctrine of "original intent," focusing on the sources of constitutional law and its landmark cases. He finds no evidence for grounding the law in original intent and argues that judicial activism is inevitable.
Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
For years a debate has raged between those who would follow the intentions of the Founding Fathers and those who would continuously reinterpret the Constitution. Leonard Levy's investigation of this debate is "merciless and brilliant" (New York Times Book Review).
Rejecting the views of both left and right, Mr. Levy evaluates the doctrine of original intent by examining the sources of constitutional law and landmark cases. Merciless and brilliant. In fascinating detail...Mr. Levy demonstrates that there can be no such animal (as original intent). --Anthony Lewis, New York Times Book Review
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History and Social Science » Law » Constitutional Law