The Warren Court and American Politics / Edition 1by Lucas A. Powe Jr.
Pub. Date: 02/15/2002
The Supreme Court under Chief Justice Earl Warren was the most revolutionary and controversial Supreme Court in American history. But in what sense? Challenging the reigning consensus that the Warren Court, fundamentally, was protecting minorities, Lucas A. Powe, Jr. revives the valuable tradition of looking at the Supreme Court in the wide political environment to find the Warren Court a functioning partner in Kennedy–Johnson liberalism. Thus the Court helped to impose national liberal-elite values on groups that were outliers to that tradition: the white South, rural America, and areas of Roman Catholic dominance.
In a learned and lively narrative, Powe discusses over 200 significant rulings: the explosive Brown decision, which fundamentally challenged the Southern way of life; reapportionment (one person, one vote), which changed the political balance of American legislatures; the gradual elimination of anti-Communist domestic security programs; the reform of criminal procedures (Mapp, Gideon, Miranda); the ban on school-sponsored prayer; and a new law on pornography.
Most of these decisions date from 1962, when those who shaped the dominant ideology of the Warren Court of storied fame gained a fifth secure liberal vote. The Justices of the majority were prominent individuals, brimming with confidence, willing to help shape a revolution and see if it would last.
Table of Contents
- 1. The Supreme Court, 1935–1953
- I. Beginnings: The 1953–1956 Terms
- Prologue: Brown before Warren
- 2. Brown
- 3. Implementation
- 4. Domestic Security
- 5. Glimpses of the Future
- II. Stalemate: The 1957–1961 Terms
- Prologue: “Dangerously, Shockingly Close”
- 6. Domestic Security after Red Monday
- 7. Little Rock and Civil Rights
- 8. The Transition
- III. History’s Warren Court: The 1962–1968 Terms
- Prologue: The Fifth Vote
- 9. To the Civil Rights Act
- 10. Revamping the Democratic Process
- 11. After the Civil Rights Act
- 12. Freedom of Expression
- 13. The End of Obscenity?
- 14. Church and State in a Pluralist Society
- 15. Policing the Police
- 16. Policing the Criminal Justice System
- 17. Wealth and Poverty
- IV. The Era Ends
- Prologue: Retirement
- 18. The Last Year
- 19. What Was the Warren Court?
- Index of Cases
- General Index
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