Document Type


Publication Date

Summer 2004


Fallacies of American Constitutionalism' examines the pervasive assumptions in the scholarship of historians, lawyers, and political scientists that impute the central role of the federal Constitution to how Americans understood written constitutions after their Revolution. American struggles to come to grips with the meaning of the sovereignty of the people before and after 1787 reveals very different views about the people as the sovereign from those reflected in the federal Constitution and dispel the notion that our prevailing constitutional view is an unbroken chain stretching back to 1787.

Publication Title

Rutgers Law Journal



First Page



American Constitutionalism, Written Constitutions, Popular Sovereignty, Historiography, Constitutional Tradition, Sovereignty of the People, Federal Constitution, Constitutional Revision, PeopleΓÇÖs Sovereignty, Federal Constitutional Convention

Included in

Law Commons



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