Colonial Foundations of American Constitutionalism

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This class, to a certain extent, picks up the story in midstream, so don't worry if things are a little tough to follow. A lot of what we're doing for this class is to set up the next two weeks of work



Hall, Major Problems, chapter 2


Montesquieu on divided government


English Bill of Rights (1689)


1.) Given the geographical separation between the colonies and Britain, could a constitutional system have been developed that would have successfully incorporated the colonies into the British body politic?

2.) How do you interpret the English Bill of Rights? What sort of society--and government--did the Bill of Rights envision? And how did the culture of rights play in America?

3.) If you were to establish a government based on Montesquieu's principles, how would it have looked? Do you see logical flaws in Montesquieu's theories?