The Creation of the Constitution
Why did elites in the early Republic decide a new document had to replace the Articles of Confederation?
What were the debates that arose around this decision?
What were the chief debates at the conference and how were they settled?
Historical background to the Constitutional Convention; the Articles of Confederation; Shay's Rebellion.
The ideologies of federalism and republicanism.
Issues at the Convention: slavery and representation; federal power; the question of an executive and how to elect them; judicial review and the shape of federal courts.
Short Response Essays
Berkin, Carol. A Brilliant Solution, Inventing the Constitution. New York: Mariner Books, 2003.