Constitutional Interpretation

Constitutional Interpretation : Illusion and Reality

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This study analyzes the process of constitutional interpretation, that is, the methodology by which the Supreme Court goes about interpreting the Constitution, and offers a comprehensive view of constitutional law through the lens of history, political science, and jurisprudence. Shaman examines the practice of creating meaning for the Constitution, the dichotomy of legal formalism and realism, the levels of judicial scrutiny, the perception of reality, and the puzzle of legislative motive. While the book traces the historical development of constitutional law, its main focus is on modern jurisprudence, including analyses of the major themes of constitutional interpretation developed by the Warren, Burger, and Rehnquist Courts. Shaman details the Warren Court's move to a more realistic jurisprudence and its development of a multi-level system of judicial review that has become increasingly more complex under the Burger and Rehnquist Courts. He critiques the Supreme Court's reversion in recent years to an old-fashioned formalistic jurisprudence and the growing tendency of the Court to look to the past rather than to future to interpret the Constitution.
The book also includes discussion of recent major doctrinal developments such as constitutional theory underlying Supreme Court decisions on gender discrimination, discrimination on the basis of sexual preference, the right to die, abortion, and freedom of speech.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 288 pages
  • 163.1 x 240.8 x 26.7mm | 630.5g
  • Praeger Publishers Inc
  • Westport, United States
  • English
  • New
  • 031331473X
  • 9780313314735

About Jeffrey M. Shaman

JEFFREY M. SHAMAN is Professor of Law at DePaul University./e He has concentrated much of his scholarship in the area of constitutional law, and his work analyzing the constitutional process has been published in law reviews across the country. He is also a national authority on judicial ethics and has written and lectured extensively on that subject. As a scholar and an attorney, Professor Shaman has participated in a variety of activities to promote human rights both in the United States and other nations.
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Table of contents

Preface Introduction Constitutional Creativity Formalism v. Realism The Levels of Scrutiny Constitutional Fact: The Perception of Reality by the Supreme Court The Puzzle of Legislative Motive Case Study: The Theory of Low-Value Speech The Vicissitudes of the Fourteenth Amendment Index
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