Similar authors to follow
See more recommendations
Customers Also Bought Items By
Reflecting on important developments like the Clinton impeachment, the balanced budget amendment, gay marriages, and the Violence Against Women Act, Vile's updated book will prove invaluable to those studying the United States Constitution. Designed to help students understand the Constitution in all of it splendor and subtlety, Vile introduces key events of the founding era, the Declaration of Independence, and the proceedings of the Constitutional Convention. The Constitution and its amendments are explored section by section, along with pertinent historical events, laws, and cases.
Students new to constitutional law, American politics, and American history will find Vile's book an authoritative starting point, quickly and easily placing the Constitution's sections and amendments in a wider context, and leading them to other important issues and texts. Those already familiar with Constitutional issues will be able to make use of the book as a reference guide, able to lead them at a glance to landmarks in the U.S. Constitutional history and development. Each chapter concludes with a bibliography of key books and cases useful for further study. Appendices include a glossary, a table of the 50 most important cases, and the texts of the Declaration of Independence, Articles of Confederation, and the Constitution.
Article V of the Constitution allows two-thirds majorities of both houses of Congress to propose amendments to the document and a three-fourths majority of the states to ratify them. Scholars and frustrated advocates of constitutional change have often criticized this process for being too difficult. Despite this, state legislatures have yet to use the other primary method that Article V outlines for proposing amendments: it permits two-thirds of the state legislatures to petition Congress to call a convention to propose amendments that, like those proposed by Congress, must be ratified by three-fourths of the states.
In this book, John R. Vile surveys more than two centuries of scholarship on Article V and concludes that the weight of the evidence (including a much-overlooked Federalist essay) indicates that states and Congress have the legal right to limit the scope of such conventions to a single subject and that political considerations would make a runaway convention unlikely. Charting a prudent course between those who fail to differentiate revolutionary change from constitutional change, those who fear ever using the Article V convention mechanism that the Framers clearly envisioned, and those who would vest total control of the convention in Congress, the states, or thebconvention itself, Vile’s work will enhance modern debates on the subject.
Now in its fourth edition and completely updated, this is the most comprehensive book on constitutional amendments and proposed amendments available.
Although only 27 amendments have ever been added to the U.S. Constitution, the last one having been ratified in 1992, throughout American history, members of Congress have introduced more than 11,000 amendments, and countless individuals outside of Congress have advanced their own proposals to revise the Constitution—the wellspring of America's legal, political, and cultural foundations. At a time when calls for a new constitutional convention are on the rise, it is essential for students of political science and history as well as American citizens to understand proposed alternatives.
This updated edition of the established standard for high school and college libraries as well as public and law libraries serves as the go-to reference for learning about existing constitutional amendments, proposed amendments, and the issues related to them. An alphabetically arranged two-volume set, it contains more than 500 entries that discuss amendments that have been proposed in Congress from 1789 to the present. It also discusses prominent proposals for extensive constitutional changes introduced outside Congress as well as discussions of major amending issues.
• Provides clear explanations of each of the 27 constitutional amendments that have been adopted throughout U.S. history as well as essays on the subjects of the thousands of other proposals that have been made
• Articulates important issues involving the constitutional amending process
• Outlines key proposals for more radical changes to the U.S. Constitution that have been introduced outside of Congress
Of all the written portraits of the delegates who attended the Federal Convention of 1787, few are as complete and compelling as those penned by William Pierce Jr. (1753–89), one of four delegates from Georgia. While at the convention or shortly thereafter, Pierce produced character sketches of fifty-three of the fifty-five delegates. Although widely quoted and cited, the sketches—until now—have never been analyzed or annotated in detail. John R. Vile’s study offers new insights into the workings of the convention and the character and roles of its delegates, as well as Pierce’s little-known life, which included time as an artist. Vile reveals, for example, that the time prior to the establishment of national parties when the framers could have successfully met together in convention may have been a relatively narrow historical window.
Following overviews of events leading to the 1787 convention and of Pierce and his immediate family, several chapters deal specifically with the character sketches. They cover Pierce’s arrangement of the sketches and their subjects, his evaluations of the delegates’ personal qualities and reputations, his assessments of their rhetorical abilities, and his descriptions of their public services, occupations, and miscellaneous matters. Two concluding chapters add further context. One examines a set of somewhat overlapping sketches that Louis Guillaume Otto, the French minister to the United States, penned about members of Congress in 1788. The other looks at writings by Pierce’s son and namesake that also include assessments of various Founding Fathers. Gathering Pierce’s sketches in full, with ample annotations and secondary materials, this is a valuable reference on Pierce’s life, work, and times.
In The Men Who Made the Constitution, constitutional scholar John R. Vile explores the lives and contributions of all delegates to the 1787 Constitutional Convention, including those who left before the Convention ended and those who stayed until the last day but refused to sign. Each biography records the delegate’s birth, education, previous positions or public service roles, homes, family life, life after the Convention, death, and resting place. Drawing directly from Convention debates and a vast array of secondary sources, Vile covers the positions of each delegate at the Convention on both major and minor issues and describes his service on committees and afterward at state ratification conventions.
The Men Who Made the Constitution includes a bibliography of key sources, engravings of delegates for whom portraits were created, a quiz on key facts, and a transcript of the Constitution of the United States. This work is the perfect reference for students and scholars, as well as professional and amateur historians, of colonial and early American history, constitutional law, and American jurisprudence.
From distinguished author John R. Vile comes a new history of the American early republic period, presented through primary documents that are illuminated and explained in context.
• Highlights and explains a wide range of key documents that range from Washington's Inaugural Address to John C. Calhoun's 1828 protest against the "Tariff of Abominations"
• Provides an engaging overview of the Early Republic of the United States that identifies the critical points in this historic period
• Presents core curriculum material for students in a way that allows them to see how scholars interact with primary sources and critically evaluate them
This book offers a set of alphabetically organized entries designed as a one-stop resource for high school and college students, members of the general public, and scholars interested in the numerous proposals that individuals have introduced to amend the U.S. Constitution.
First published to universal acclaim, including a "Best Reference Book" citation from Library Journal, John Vile's award-winning Encyclopedia of Constitutional Amendments, Proposed Amendments, and Amending Issues has long served as the definitive work on this vast and essential subject. Expanded and updated, the new Third Edition of this landmark resource takes its place as the most comprehensive and up-to-date reference of its kind.
With over 500 alphabetically organized entries, the Encyclopedia tells the whole story of constitutional amendments: the rigorous ratification process, the significance of the 27 amendments that made it into the Constitution, and the notable and sometimes preposterous topics of the thousands that did not. The third edition offers a new preface, updated research throughout, and over 75 new entries, including discussions of amendments currently under consideration, such as proposals to ban burning the U.S. flag, legalize school prayer, and compel the federal government to balance the budget.
• Over 500 A–Z entries on amendments, proposed amendments, alternate constitutions, and amending issues
• A chronology of the most popular amending proposals by year and key events and publications related to constitutional amendments
• Primary documents, including the U.S. Constitution and its amendments
• An extensive bibliography plus suggestions for further reading for each entry
• A comprehensive index