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The Uses & Abuses of the Constitution

Panel from Benjamin Franklin: A Biography, Classics Illustrated 65, 1949.

Common-place: The Interactive Journal of Early American Life has released a special issue on the United States Constitution. It provides a roundtable discussion of several questions concerning the uses and abuses of the Constitution in contemporary American political affairs. The eight essays are divided into four sections: Electoral College, The Clinton Impeachment, The Second Amendment, and Women and the Constitution.

The Bush vs. Gore controversy is tackled by distinguished professor Rogers Smith, while other leading scholars such as Jack Rakove and Linda Kerber address the role of the Constitution in landmark cases, the Clinton impeachment, the gun control debate, and the rights of women. The essays are a readable length, between 2,500 and 3,500 words, and offer a "common-place" for academic and non-academic readers alike.