Professor Tsai presents an octet of fascinating tales revolving around these alternative constitutions, drawn up by individuals (like radical abolitionist John Brown), factions (recent Aryan separatists in the Pacific Northwest), and even entire peoples (the early twentieth-century Cherokee Sequoyah movement). Rather than serving as discrete vignettes, the eight stories are interconnected, and, to an even greater degree, tied to the 1787 Constitution. Southern secessionists, for instance, borrowed almost everything but their categorical protection of slavery from the 1787 charter. All in all, Professor Tsai offers an enlightening, refreshing take on constitutional history that is accessible to legal veterans and newcomers alike.
Friday, January 30, 2015
capsule review of America's Forgotten Constitutions: