"The United States Constitution is the oldest and the shortest written constitution in the world. Its 4,400 words have played a crucial role in limiting government and creating freedom for over 200 years." - Trent Lorcher.
The US Constitution established a stronger federal government with three branches and a system of checks and balances to ensure no single branch would have too much power. Then, in 1791, the Bill of Rights became part of the Constitution - 10 amendments guaranteeing basic individual protections, such as freedom of speech and religion.
This summer, explore the creation of the federal Constitution of 1787 and the Bill of Rights in HIST 423.
This course sheds light on many of the contemporary issues and debates we have about the powers of government and the problems of democracy. It turns out the most of the things people complain about regarding the Constitution that they see standing in the way of a democracy that represents "the people" over moneyed interests are not bugs in the system, but features designed by the founders to be "barriers against democracy." So, when people complain about the lack of democracy in things like the electoral college, the senate, unaccountable executive power, and gerrymandered election districts, they are complaining about things that are generally working as the founders intended - to give the "wealthy and well born" structural advantages over "the people."
Instructor: Terry Bouton
Dates: May 28 - July 5
Instruction Mode: Online