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The Law Library Commemorated Constitution Day with a Book Talk by Professor Michael J. Klarman

The Law Library of Congress commemorated Constitution Day a little early this year with a book talk by Harvard Law Professor Michael J. Klarman on September 12th. Professor Klarman discussed his book, The Framers’ Coup: The Making of the United States Constitution. Prof. Klarman referred to the Philadelphia convention as a coup because the delegates defied their instructions in crafting a new design for a federal government that was much more nationalist and anti-populist in design than the Articles of the Confederation. Despite the Federalists’ success in crafting a strong federal government, the document still had to be ratified by nine of the thirteen states to become operative. Many of these states had enacted populist legislation, such as debtor relief acts, earlier in the decade which was antithetical to the Framers’ view of government. How did the Federalists overcome Anti-Federalist objections to the new model of government? Watch Prof. Klarman discuss how a combination of guile and good fortune on the part of the Federalists led to the ratification of the United States Constitution, a document that has endured to become one of the world’s longest surviving, written charters of government.

Law Library to Commemorate Constitution Day with Book Talk

At 230 years old, the United States Constitution is the oldest surviving written charter of government in the world. The “Framers” signed the Constitution on September 17, 1787. The document defines the powers and limits of the executive, judicial and legislative branches of government, and the fundamental rights of all Americans. The Law Library of […]

Join the Law Library at the 17th Annual National Book Festival!

The Library of Congress 17th annual National Book Festival kicks off at 8:30 a.m. on Saturday, September 2 in the Walter E. Washington Convention Center. Law Library of Congress staff are delighted once again to have an opportunity to discuss our legal collection and services, and share a number of family-friendly activities with festival attendees. […]

Justice for Shylock: A Mock Appeal

On Wednesday, June 21st, the Law Library of Congress was pleased to host a mock appeal for the Shakespearean character, Shylock, from the Merchant of Venice. Our distinguished panel of judges included United States Supreme Court Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg;  Associate Dean for International Affairs and Professor of Law at Wake Forest University School […]

Symposium on Rights and Resistance: Civil Liberties During Wartime

On Thursday, June 8, the Manuscripts Division in association with the Law Library sponsored a symposium examining the effects of World War I on civil liberties in the United States. Mary Dudziak, of Emory University, provided a historical overview of how Woodrow Wilson went from being reelected as the peace candidate- to in April 1917, requesting a […]

Loving v. Virginia: “Banished” for Love

“Absence from those we love is self from self–a deadly banishment.”–William Shakespeare, A Midsummer Night’s Dream At the Library On May 3, 2017, in observance of the approaching 50th anniversary of Loving v. Virginia, the Library of Congress hosted a discussion on this famous interracial-marriage case.  The panel included Patricia Hruby Powell and Shadra Strickland, […]

Bamberg Criminal Code of 1507 – Pic of the Week

On Monday, I had the pleasure of assembling a display of rare books for guests attending the 2017 Burton Awards ceremony held at the Library of Congress.  Created by Williams C. Burton, the awards acknowledge, celebrate, and reward outstanding achievements in the legal field, including for legal writing, regulatory reform and public service. The display […]