Popular Sovereignty or Natural Law? At a time of constitutional crisis in the American body politic, Guy Padula's timely and stimulating new work explores whether the answers to today's heated political debate can be found by scrutinizing the past. In Madison v. Marshall Padula turns the spotlight on the interpretive intent of America's Founding Fathers to discover if the consent of the people or the rule of justice triumphs. Comparing the constitutional theories of the Founding generation's two preeminent constitutional authorities, Padula shatters the Originalist myth that Madison and Marshall shared a compatible constitutional jurisprudence. He concludes that the meaning of the Constitution has been contested from the outset. This is essential reading for legal scholars, political scientists and historians seeking to learn more about the fundamental nature of U.S. law and how it should be interpreted.
The volume is therefore a very welcome and provocative contribution to the discussion over whether the founding generation favored a constitutional jurisprudence of 'original intent' or one based on the application of universal principles of justice. -- Philippa Strum, The City University of New York How should the U.S. Constitution be interpreted? Padula demonstrates that the two authorities at the time of the founding of the Republic, James Madison and John Marshall, could hardly agree whether the Constitution's meaning is fixed once and for all or remains subject to change in response to new developments. This learned and insightful book is a valuable resource for citizens as well as scholars. -- John Patrick Diggins, The City University of New York In Madison v. Marshall Guy Padula has written with great erudition and lucidity about two fundamental approaches to constitutional interpretation developed by the Founders. His book will stimulate new ways of thinking about 'originalist' interpretations and can help our own generation think through the questions of constitutional meaning and the role of the courts in shaping it. -- Richard M. Pious, Barnard College
Chapter 1 All Countries Have Some Form of Government Chapter 2 The Poisonous Tendency of Precedents of Usurpation Chapter 3 We the People: An Assembly of Demigods Chapter 4 Colonel H. Deserted Me Chapter 5 I Believe I Must Nominate You Chapter 6 Never Give Him An Affirmative Answer Chapter 7 We Start With First Principles Chapter 8 Conclusion: The Mystery of Things