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The American State from the Civil War to the New Deal
The Twilight of Constitutionalism and the Triumph of Progressivism


  • Date Published: August 2013
  • availability: In stock
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9781107655010

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About the Authors
  • This book tells the story of constitutional government in America during the period of the 'social question'. After the Civil War and Reconstruction, and before the 'second Reconstruction' and cultural revolution of the 1960s, Americans dealt with the challenges of the urban and industrial revolutions. In the crises of the American Revolution and the Civil War, the American founders - and then Lincoln and the Republicans - returned to a long tradition of Anglo-American constitutional principles. During the Industrial Revolution, American political thinkers and actors gradually abandoned those principles for a set of modern ideas, initially called progressivism. The social crisis, culminating in the Great Depression, did not produce a Lincoln to return to the founders' principles, but rather a series of leaders who repudiated them. Since the New Deal, Americans have lived in a constitutional twilight, not having completely abandoned the natural-rights constitutionalism of the founders, nor embraced the entitlement-based welfare state of modern liberalism.

    • Combines the work of economics, political science and law
    • Synthesizes much recent scholarship into a coherent narrative
    • Challenges the predominant academic view which celebrates this rise of government power, and shows how the traditional ideas of the founders were undermined in the 'progressive' and 'New Deal' eras
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'This is an important, albeit at times difficult and highly opinionated, analysis of US constitutional development from the immediate post-Civil War era through the New Deal.' Choice

    'This study's emphasis on ideas in American political development sets it apart from many similar historical works. Yet the careful research on policy and jurisprudence adds a detailed narrative of the nuts and bolts of American politics that is sometimes lacking in works of political theory. Moreno's book is an ambitious, meticulously researched, and thoughtful study strongly rooted in primary sources. It should be required reading for anyone interested in constitutionalism and jurisprudence, political thought, and American political development.' Jason R. Jividen, The Journal of American History

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    Product details

    • Date Published: August 2013
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9781107655010
    • length: 362 pages
    • dimensions: 235 x 155 x 20 mm
    • weight: 0.54kg
    • availability: In stock
  • Table of Contents

    1. The post-war Constitution
    2. The judiciary and private rights
    3. Crisis of 1890s
    4. The new jurisprudence
    5. The due process dialectic
    6. Federal police power
    7. Rooseveltian progressivism
    8. The Lochner incident
    9. Court and Constitution in crisis
    10. Taft and the Republican crack-up
    11. Wilsonian progressivism
    12. The new freedom
    13. The new Wilson
    14. The Great War
    15. The return of the regular republicans
    16. The Taft court
    17. The last progressive
    18. The New Deal
    19. To the brink
    20. The Second New Deal
    21. The court fight
    22. The abortive Third New Deal
    23. The New Deal court.

  • Author

    Paul D. Moreno, Hillsdale College, Michigan
    Paul D. Moreno is the William and Berniece Grewcock Chair in the American Constitution and is the Dean of Faculty at Hillsdale College. He has taught at Hillsdale College for thirteen years and has held visiting professorships at Princeton University and the University of Paris School of Law. He earned his doctorate under Herman Belz at the University of Maryland in 1994. Moreno is the author of From Direct Action to Affirmative Action: Fair Employment Law and Policy in America and Black Americans and Organized Labor: A New History.

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