See also HU Faculty Publications
The History of the U.S. Constitution
- Primary Documents in American History - Includes a copy of the Constitution with marginal notes by George Washington is included in the Library of Congress' virtual collection.
- The Charters of Freedom This National Archives and Records Administration site includes digital images of the Constitution and related documents.
- The Evolving Constitution This article from the CQ Encyclopedia of American Government provides an overview and commentary on the evolution of the Constitution from the the Declaration of Rights and Grievances, the Declaration of Independence, the Articles of Confederation, to the ratification of the Constitution and the first ten amendments (known as the Bill of Rights).
- Centuries of Citizenship: A Constitutional Timeline Highlights selected events pertinent to our constitutional history over the past 200 years
- Organization of the Constitution Headings or brief phrases depicting the infrastructure of government and themes covered in this pivotal document.
- Interactive Constitution Search the Constitution by topic, keyword or Supreme Court case via this interactive web site from the National Constitution Center.
- What is Constitution Day? The National Constitution Center and its partners provide resources for educators, employees, parents, and students to observe September 17th as the birthday of the United States government.
The Constitution: Foundation of Our System of Government
IInterpretations of the Constitution
- Constitutional Law: An Overview –The responsibility of the Supreme Court in the interpretation and implementation of the U.S. Constitution is set forth in Article III, section 3.
- Theories of Constitutional Interpretation – Outlines five sources that have guided the interpretation of the Constitution and names justices that are “originalists” and “non-originalists.”
- Exploring Constitutional Law – Provides links to some of the great issues, conflicts, and controversies that surround the Constitution.
- U.S. Supreme Court Center – Includes biographies of justices, information on cases in the docket, and essays on current controversies.
- Selected Constitutional Law Decisions of the U.S. Supreme Court – Links to selected Constitutional law decisions made between 1947 and 1992.
- OYEZ: U.S. Supreme Court Media – Find summaries of Supreme Court cases, oral arguments and multimedia.
- Researching Constitutional Law on the Internet - A useful bibliography from the University of Chicago.
- Votes by Justices in Recent Landmark Supreme Court Decisions, 1989 to Present - Pictorial guide depicting the decisions for or against major issues from flag burning to the right to bear arms.
- McCain and Obama Split on Justices' Guantanamo Ruling - Candidates took differing positions on the Supreme Court decision to grant suspected terrorists the right to challenge their detention in civilian courts.
- Arthur, John. Words that Bind: Judicial Review and the Grounds of Modern Constitutional Theory. Boulder: Westview Press, 1995. (Law Library, KF4575 .A97 1995)
- Barber, Sotirios A. The Constitution of Judicial Power. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1993. (Law Library, KF4575 .B37 1993)
- Brisbin, Richard A. Justice Antonin Scalia and the Conservative Revival. Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1997 (Law Library, KF4575.W45 1991)
- Burgess, Susan R. Contest for Constitutional Authority: the Abortion and War Powers Debates. Lawrence, KS: University Press of Kansas, 1992. (Law Library, KF8700.B87 1991)
- Burt, Robert. The Constitution in Conflict. Cambridge, MA: Belknap Press, 1992. (Law Library, KF5130 .B87 1992)
- Clinton, Robert Lowry. God and Man in the Law: the Foundations of Anglo-American Constitutionalism. Lawrence, KS: University Press of Kansas, 1997. (Law Library, KF4552.C57 1997)
- Farber, Daniel A. Desperately Seeking Certainty: The Misguided Quest for Constitutional Foundations. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2002. (Law Library, KF4550 .F367 2002)
- Maltz, Earl M. Rethinking Constitutional Law: Originalism, Interventionism, and the Politics of Judicial Review. Lawrence, KS: University Press of Kansas, 1994. (Law Library, KF4550 .M26 1994)
- Peretti, Terri Jennings. In Defense of a Political Court. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1999. (Law Library, KF8748 .P46 1999)
- Rossum, Ralph A. Antonin Scalia’s Jurisprudence: Text and Tradition. Lawrence: University Press of Kansas, 2006. (Law Library, KF8745 .S33 R67 2006)
- Schwartz, Bernard. The New Right and the Constitution: Turning Back the Legal Clock. Boston: Northeastern University Press, 1990. (Law Library, KF4550 .S335 1990)
- Segal, Jeffry Allan. The Supreme Court and the Attitudinal Model Revisited. NY: Cambridge University Press, 2002. (Law Library, KF87742 .S431 2002)
- Smith, Steven D. The Constitution and the Pride of Reason. NY: Oxford University Press, 1998. (Law Library, KF4552 .S63 1998)
- Whittington, Keith E. Constitutional Construction: Divided Powers and Constitutional Meaning. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1999. (Law Library, KF4552 .W48 1998)
- _________. Constitutional Interpretation: Textual Meaning, Original Intent, and Judicial Review. Lawrence , KS: University Press of Kansas, 1999. (Law Library, KF4550 .W475 1999)
- Wolfe, Christopher.The Rise of Modern Judicial Review: From Constitutional Interpretation to Judge-Made Law. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 1994. (Law Library, KF4575 .W65 1994)
Criteria and Procedures for Selecting U.S. Supreme Court Justices
- On the Issues: Judges – Election Guide 2008 -- The New York Times’ summary of the 2008 presidential candidates’ views on judicial nominations
- Selecting Supreme Court Justices: A Dialogue – In this article fromthe Spring 2005 issue of Focus on Law Studies, published by the American Bar Association, “nine social science and legal scholars discuss the process of selecting Supreme Court justices, including historical and contemporary perspectives, the role of the Senate, president, and interest groups….”
- Selection of Justices - Answers.Com provides a concise but informative overview of the process of selecting justices for the U.S. Supreme Court.
- Supreme Court Nominations Research Guide – outlines steps in the nomination and confirmation process and includes links to resources about President George W. Bush’s nominees.
- Presidential Strategies in Supreme Court Justice Selection – This article evaluates the strategies used by presidents from 1937 to 1994 in the selection of nominees for the highest court.
- Pursuit of Justices: Presidential Politics and the Selection of Supreme Court Nominees by David Alistair Yalof is reviewed by Sheldon Goldman in The American Political Science Review, 96.1 (March 2002): 222-223. (Law Library, KF8776 .B38 2002)
- The Selection of U.S. Supreme Court Justices – NYU professor Norman Dorsen discusses the influence of professional merit and ideological compatibility in the selection of Supreme Court Justices in the International Journal of Constitutional Law, 4.4 (2006):652-663.
- Congressional Pressure on the Justices: Selection and Rejection is discussed by Elder Witt and Joan Biskupic in CQ Press’ Guide to the U.S. Supreme Court, 3 rd Edition, Volume 2 (1997). (Founders Library, Reference KF8742 .W567 1997)
- Abraham, Henry J. Justices, Presidents, and Senators: A History of the U.S. Supreme Court Appointments from Washington to Bush II. Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2008. (Founders Library, KF8742 .A72 2008)
- Baugh, Joyce A. Supreme Court Justices in the Post-Bork Era: Confirmation Politics and Judicial Performance. New York: P. Lang, 2002. (Law Library, KF8776 .S37 2002)
- Comiskey, Michael. Seeking Justices: The Judging of Supreme Court Nominees. Lawrence, Kansas: University Press of Kansas, 2004. (Law Library, KF8742 .N46 2007)
- Mackenzie, G. Calvin, Editor. Innocent Until Nominated: The Breakdown of the Presidential Appointments Process. Washington, DC: Brookings Institution Press, 2001. (Founders Library, JK731 .I56 2001)
- Maltese, John Anthony. The Selling of Supreme Court Nominees. Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1995. (Founders Library, KF8742 .M26 1995)
- Nemacheck, Christine L. Strategic Selection: Presidential Nomination of Supreme Court Judges from Herbert Hoover through George W. Bush. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2008. (Law Library, KF8742 .A72 2008)
- Pilon, Roger. How Constitutional Corruption Has Led to Ideological Litmus Tests for Judicial Nominees. Washington, DC: Cato Institute, 2002. (Business Library, KF8776 .P54 2002)
- Smith, Christopher E. Critical Judicial Nominations and Political Change: The Impact of Clarence Thomas. Westport, Conn.: Praeger, 1993. (Founders Library, KF8742 .S57 1993)
Sample Issues for Supreme Court Deliberation
- The Online NewsHour: Supreme Court Watch – PBS staffers describe how the Supreme Court term left doors open for future disputes. The site provides highlights of the Court’s deliberations as well as background information on the Justices and past rulings.
- Point Austin: MUD in Your Eye – The Northwest Austin Municipal Utility District No. 1 sued the US Department of Justice on the grounds that water and wastewater infrastructure bonding would be too burdensome if the district had to comply with the electoral preclearance provisions of the federal Voting Rights Act .
- Court Unanimously Upholds Key Provision of the Voting Rights Act – The federal court rejected the Northwest Austin Municipal Utility District’s claim to be exempt from enforcement of Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act.
- Judges Uphold Voting Rights Act – Washington Post staff writer, Del Quentin Wilber, provides a link to the 121-page opinion of two U.S. District Court judges and an appellate court judge who, on May 30, 2008, ruled that the Northwest Austin Municipal Utility District Number One is “not entitled to an exemption from rigid requirements of the Voting Rights Act,” which Congress had appropriately reauthorized.
- Cavala: Republican Party Begins Campaign to Suppress the Vote—“Lose Your House, Lose Your Vote” - Bill Cavala, former Deputy Director of the Assembly Speaker’s Office of Member Services in Sacramento, reports that, in the upcoming Presidential election, a ‘swing’ state may challenge voters on “residency” grounds if their homes have been put into foreclosure.
- New Directive to Increase Protection for Ohio Voters from Partisan Voter Caging - MarketWatch reports that Ohio’s Secretary of State directs that voters be notified before “their right to vote is challenged” in the upcoming election.
- 2008 Voting Challenges – The editors of America, The National Catholic Weekly suspect that the Indiana law requiring possession of a government-issued photo I.D. as a condition for voting is aimed at low-income persons, the elderly, people with disabilities, and racial minorities.
- The Democracy Restoration Act – New York University’s Brennan Center for Justice has a fact sheet indicating why this bill, which would affect 5.3 million adults, is important. The Act will restore the right to vote in federal elections to American citizens who are released from prison or are serving probation.
- H.R. 492: District of Columbia Voting Rights Restoration Act of 2007 – The bill to restore Federal election rights to the residents of the District of Columbia residents was introduced in January 2007 and referred to the Subcommittee on Federal Workforce, Post Office and the District of Columbia in March 2007.
- Ensuring Access to the Ballot Box: Voting Rights in the United States – Elizabeth M. Yang and Kristi Gaines make a case for “continued vigilance and study as changes in our society and technology affect our electoral process.”
- Political Participation: Voter Identification, Voter Registration and Student Voting Requirements -- essay exploring voter suppression and limits on political participation from the American Constitutional Society.
- Times Topics: Supreme Court, U.S. -- Features articles about the Supreme Court from the New York Times and other sources. Also includes biographical sketches of the Supreme Court Justices and multimedia links.
The Constitution in Teaching and Learning (Lesson Plans)
- Encyclopedia of the American Constitution [CD-ROM]. New York: Simon & Shuster Macmillan, 1996. Founders Library, Reference)
- The Constitution, that Delicate Balance [videorecording]. Produced by Jude Dratt. 780 min. New York: Media and society Seminars of the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, 1984. (Media Center, JK34 C66 1984)
- Blacks and the Constitution [videorecording]. Produced by the Howard University School of Law, April 13, 1987. 105 min. Washington, D.C.: Howard University School of Law, 1987. (Law Library, KF4757 .B53 1987)
- The Afro-American Experience and the U. S. Constitution: Compromise, Conflict, and Change [videorecording]. Sponsored by the Washington Bar Association, District of Columbia Bar, and Howard University School of Law. 105 min. Washington, D.C.: Howard University School of Law, 1987. (Law Library, KF4757 .A97 1987)
For additional books, search Sterling or Daniel Web Catalog for the subject "United States. Constitution," or "United States. Supreme Court -- History," or "judges -- selection and appointment -- United States." Also, conduct a keyword search combining "constitution" and such terms as "strict construction," "judicial politics," or "voting rights." For videotapes, add "video" as a keyword in your search statement or limit the catalog searches by format (material type).
For journal articles, conduct keyword searches in databases such as Academic Search Premier (EBSCOhost), America: History and Life, JSTOR, Lexis-Nexis, Project Muse or Social Sciences Full-Text (Wilson Web).