Document Type

Article

Publication Date

4-30-2020

Abstract

Written for the Symposium on Gerald Leonard and Saul Cornell, The Partisan Republic: Democracy, Exclusion, and the Fall of the Founders' Constitution, 1780s-1830s (Cambridge University Press, 2019).

Gerry Leonard and Saul Cornell’s fascinating book, The Partisan Republic: Democracy, Exclusion, and the Fall of the Founders’ Constitution, 1780-1830s tells the story, as I put in in a blurb, “of the unsettling transformation of aristocratic-tinged constitutional republic into a partisan white male democracy.” In this year where we recall the Nineteenth Amendment’s re-enfranchisement of women, the Leonard/Cornell book demands that we reevaluate the way we describe the early nineteenth-century constitutional state. In short, why do we continue to use the word democracy?

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