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Constitutional Originalism – A Debate - Cornell Scholarship Online
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Constitutional Originalism: A Debate

Robert.W Bennett and Lawrence B. Solum


Problems of constitutional interpretation have many faces, but much of the contemporary discussion has focused on what has come to be called “originalism.” The core of originalism is the belief that fidelity to the original understanding of the Constitution should constrain contemporary judges. As originalist thinking has evolved, it has become clear that there is a family of originalist theories, some emphasizing the intent of the framers, while others focus on the original public meaning of the constitutional text. This idea has enjoyed a modern resurgence, in reaction to the assumption of m ... More

Keywords: originalism, constitutional interpretation, living Constitution, dispute resolution, originalist thinking, originalist theories, Supreme Court, judges, appellate courts

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2011 Print ISBN-13: 9780801447938
Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: August 2016 DOI:10.7591/cornell/9780801447938.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Robert.W Bennett, author
Northwestern University

Lawrence B. Solum, author

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Front Matter

We Are All Originalists Now

Lawrence B. Solum

Living with Originalism

A Response by Lawrence B. Solum

Are We All Living Constitutionalists Now?

A Response by Robert W. Bennett