First American Constitutions / Edition 1

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Overview

For the last twenty years this book has been cited by every serious writer on early American constitutional development. Any constitutional history of the independent United States must begin with this comprehensive study. Professor Adams combines a European perspective and a thorough knowledge of the antecedents of 1787 to create an insightful analysis of the replacement by the revolutionary generation of one government by another by—they thought—"constitutional" means. Acting for "the people" in 11 of the 13 rebelling states, various kinds of self-empowered committees, "congresses," or "conventions" created new constitutions and a system in which the states dominated over the weaker Confederation government. This volume contains two new chapters: one demonstrating precedents in the state constitutions for the U.S. Constitution, and another chapter critically testing the "republicanism over liberalism" thesis against political ideas and institutional arrangements that constitute the first state constitutions. The bibliography has been updated to include the rich body of work written during the last two decades, much of it indebted to this pioneering study.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780742520691
  • Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
  • Publication date: 11/28/2001
  • Edition description: Expanded
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 402
  • Product dimensions: 0.89 (w) x 6.00 (h) x 9.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Willi Paul Adams is professor of North American history at the John F. Kennedy Institute for North American Studies of the Freie Universitaet Berlin, Germany. He and his wife Angela Adams translated The Federalist Papers into German (Paderborn, 1994).

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Table of Contents

Chapter 1 Foreword Chapter 2 Preface Chapter 3 Introduction Chapter 4 Government by Congresses and Committees, 1773-1776 Chapter 5 The Role of the Continental Congress, 1775-1776 Chapter 6 "Choosing the Deputies to Form a Government": The Making of the First State Constitutions Chapter 7 "Republic" and "Democracy" in Political Rhetoric Chapter 8 Forms versus Principles of Government: Harnessing Enlightenment Ideas to Anglo-American Institutions Chapter 9 Popular Sovereignty Chapter 10 Liberty Chapter 11 Equality Chapter 12 Property Chapter 13 The Common Good Chapter 14 Representation Chapter 15 The Separation of Powers Chapter 16 Federalism Chapter 17 The State Constitutions' Analogies and Precedents for the United States Constitution Chapter 18 Testing the Republicanism versus Liberalism Hypotheses Chapter 19 Appendixes Chapter 20 Bibliography Chapter 21 Index

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