Constitutional Construction by Keith E. Whittington
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Constitutional Construction
By Keith E. Whittington

Constitutional Construction

Divided Powers and Constitutional Meaning

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Format: Paperback

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Constitutional Construction by Keith E. Whittington

Book Description

This text argues that the American Constitution has a dual nature. The first aspect, on which legal scholars have focused, is the degree to which the Constitution acts as a binding set of rules that can be neutrally interpreted and externally enforced by the courts against government actors. This is the process of constitutional interpretation. But according to Keith Whittington, the Constitution also permeates politics itself, to guide and constrain political actors in the very process of making public policy. In so doing, it is also dependent on political actors, both to formulate authoritative constitutional requirements and to enforce those fundamental settlements in the future. Whittington characterizes this process, by which constitutional meaning is shaped within politics at the same time that politics is shaped by the Constitution, as one of construction as opposed to interpretation. Whittington goes on to argue that ambiguities in the constitutional text and changes in the political situation push political actors to construct their own constitutional understanding. The construction of constitutional meaning is a necessary part of the political process and a regular part of American history, how a democracy lives with a written constitution. The Constitution both binds and empowers government officials.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780674005839
ISBN-10: 067400583X
Format: Paperback
(235mm x 155mm x 18mm)
Pages: 316
Imprint: Harvard University Press
Publisher: Harvard University Press
Publish Date: 1-Jun-2001
Country of Publication: United States

Other Editions...


Books By Author Keith E. Whittington

American Constitutionalism by Keith E. Whittington American Constitutionalism, Paperback (November 2016)

Constitutionalism in the United States is not determined solely by decisions made by the Supreme Court. Moving beyond traditional casebooks, renowned scholars Howard Gillman, Mark A. Graber, and Keith E. Whittington take a refreshingly innovative approach in American Constitutionalism.

Complete American Constitutionalism by Keith E. Whittington Complete American Constitutionalism, Hardback (May 2015)

In The Complete American Constitutionalism, Volume One: Introduction and The Colonial Era, the authors provide the building blocks for constitutional analysis with an in-depth exploration of the constitutional conflicts in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries that formed the overall American constitutional experience.

Oxford Handbook of Law and Politics by Keith E. Whittington Oxford Handbook of Law and Politics, Paperback (June 2010)

The Oxford Handbooks of Political Science are the essential guide to the state of political science today. With engaging contributions from major international scholars, The Oxford Handbook of Law and Politics provides the key point of reference for anyone working on the interception between law and political science.

» View all books by Keith E. Whittington

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Author Biography - Keith E. Whittington

Keith E. Whittington is Assistant Professor of Politics at Princeton University.

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Recent books by Keith E. Whittington close
American Constitutionalism by Keith E. Whittington
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