2018-2019 University Catalogue 
    Aug 15, 2020  
2018-2019 University Catalogue [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

POSC 469 - Seminar: Constitutional Theory

Using the Constitution of the United States as its central case, the seminar examines the theory and practice of constitutions and constitutionalism. Students consider such questions as: What is a constitution? Why have one? What does it mean to “have” a constitution (what are the possible relations between the text and practice)? What are the distinct forms of constitutional government and what are their advantages and disadvantages? To what extent should we consider a constitution a cause or effect of political culture? How should one interpret a constitution; to what extent are the terms of American debate—such as originalism v. nonoriginalism—found in other countries? As the form of government to which most countries aspire today (or the form they claim to be), liberal democracy seems to have pride of place, but why? Is it the right answer to the ancient question of the “best regime”? Or perhaps the best practicable regime? Do the forces of history favor its existence, or does this depend more fundamentally on acts of statesmanship?

Credits: 1.00
Corequisite: None
Prerequisites: None
Major/Minor Restrictions: None
Class Restriction: None
Area of Inquiry: Social Relations,Inst.& Agents
Liberal Arts CORE: None

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