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The Second Creation: Fixing the American Constitution in the Founding Era

Event Details

Tue, May 07, 2019
06:30PM - 08:30PM
Piatti Restaurant
625 Redwood Highway, Mill Valley CA 94941
Map address
Registration Period:
$30 per person pre-registration, $35 at the door
Mike Iker

Americans widely believe that the United States Constitution was created when it was drafted in 1787 and ratified in 1788. But when the Constitution first appeared, it was shrouded in uncertainty. Not only was its meaning unclear, but so too was its essential nature. Was the American Constitution a written text, or something else? Was it a legal text? Was it finished or unfinished? What rules would guide its interpretation? Who would adjudicate competing readings?  

As political leaders put the Constitution to work, none of these questions had answers. In confronting that uncertainty, American political leaders fought over how to imagine the Constitution—its content, its properties, its character. In the process, they helped give the Constitution shape and definition that it had previously lacked and thus played a foundational role in creating, as much as interpreting, the nation's supreme governing instrument.

Event Links

Event 29059