The Great Debate: Advocates and Opponents of the American Constitution : The Great Courses: Modern History

  • by The Great Courses
  • Narrated by Professor Thomas L. Pangle
  • Series: The Great Courses: Modern History
  • 6 hrs and 15 mins
  • Lecture

Publisher's Summary

Recent years have seen an explosion of interest in and interpretation of the U.S. Constitution. Its authority and stature are routinely invoked by voices from every point on the political spectrum, with frequent references to the Founding Fathers and their true "intent." What really was their true intent?
As these 12 surprising lectures show, many of those Founding Fathers - including Thomas Jefferson and Patrick Henry - were highly critical of the new Constitution and staunchly opposed it when it was first put forth for ratification by the states as a replacement for the Articles of Confederation.
The debate over the Constitution raged for the better part of two years, and beneath its rhetorical flourishes lay not only the longest and most profound civic argument in our nation's history, but also a civics lesson that deserves to endure for all time. It was an argument that would result not only in the ratification of the Constitution, but also in what that Constitution would become.
Professor Pangle takes you into this debate. You'll see which Founders opposed the new Constitution, which Founders led the battle for it, and how both sides helped define the result. In an era when contemporary arguments on the national stage so often mirror the same conflicts debated by the Founders, our own reenactment of that original debate can enrich our ability to be active and participating citizens.


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Great comparison of federalist and anti-federalist

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?


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The lecture is a great break down between the federalist papers and the anti-federalist papers. Explains why the confederation was a bad idea because of lack of central power.

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- Wojciech

A thought provoking review

Professor Pangle provides the academics wrapped up in a passionate and eye opening review of the struggle set before the founding fathers. Thanks for your insight.
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- Conoco Glenn Mencer

Book Details

  • Release Date: 07-08-2013
  • Publisher: The Great Courses