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A Culture of Rights

A Culture of Rights
The Bill of Rights in Philosophy, Politics and Law 1791 and 1991

Part of Woodrow Wilson Center Press

  • Date Published: May 1993
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521446532

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About the Authors
  • Written by leading authorities in history, philosophy, jurisprudence and political theory, the essays in this volume provide insights into the variable and changing contents of the rights thinking and consciousness that lie at the core of American political culture and shape its central political institutions. Based on the current state of scholarly understanding and intended to provide a fresh sense of orientation into the complexities of the separate topics covered, the studies focus on two distinct 'moments' in the American experience: the eighteenth-century period of founding that produced the Bill of Rights as an element in the Constitutional settlement, and the contemporary moment, marked by a new historical consciousness of the difficulties of interpreting rights in changing contexts and thus by the continuing search for a properly grounded philosophical jurisprudence adequate to meet the ethical, social, and political conflicts of the present.

    Reviews & endorsements

    'For anyone seriously interested in understanding the American political founding and the evolution of our constitutional republic, A Culture of Rights is required reading. The impressive essays in this collection … explore the cultural, moral, philosophical, legal and political moorings of rights as they were established and have developed throughout American history … This collection is a valuable and important contribution to the literature and belongs in all academic libraries.' Library Journal

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    Product details

    • Date Published: May 1993
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521446532
    • length: 484 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 152 x 27 mm
    • weight: 0.71kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Acknowledgments
    Introduction: history, historicism, and the culture of rights
    1. From natural law to the rights of man: a European perspective on American debates
    2. The Bill of Rights and the American revolutionary experience
    3. Parchment barriers and the politics of rights
    4. Rights and wrongs: Jefferson, slavery and philosophical quandaries
    5. Practical philosophy and the Bill of Rights: perspectives on some contemporary issues
    6. The development of modern American legal theory and the judicial interpretation of the Bill of Rights
    7. The British, the Americans, and rights Appendix: the constitution and the Bill of Rights
    About the authors
    Index.

  • Editors

    Michael James Lacey, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, Washington DC

    Knud Haakonssen, University Of Erfurt

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