Symposium: Calvin Johnson's Righteous Anger at the Wicked
The Meaning of the Founders' Constitution
What: Symposium to discuss Righteous Anger at the Wicked
States : The Meaning of the Founders' Constitution.
Location and Time: Thurs., Oct. 27 from 3:30–5:00; Fri., Oct.
28 from 1:00–5:00 pm. All panel discussions will be held in the Eidman
Courtroom, UT Law.
Who:The event is free and the public is invited.
AUSTIN, Texas — Nationally prominent historians, political scientists,
and legal scholars will discuss Professor Calvin Johnson's Righteous
Anger at the Wicked States (Cambridge University Press, 2005) at a
symposium on October 28, 2005. The scheduled speakers include:
- Panel 1: Political science; 3:30–5pm Thurs. Oct. 27, Eidman
Courtroom, Law School
- Walter Dean Burnham (UT Political Science, author Critical
elections and the Mainsprings of American Politics).
- Sotioris Barber, (Notre Dame) (author, On What the
- Keith Whittington (Princeton Political Science) (author,
Constitutional Interpretation: Textual Meaning, Original
Intent, and Judicial Review).
- Moderator: Jeffrey Tulis (UT Political Science) (author, The
- Panel 2: History panel; 1–3pm Fri., Oct. 28, Eidman
- Jack Rakove, (Stanford History Department) (by video link)
(author, Original Meanings: Politics and Ideas in the
Creation of the Constitution).
- Jack Greene, (Johns Hopkins History Department), Blackwell
Encyclopedia of The American Revolution (editor in
- John Kaminski, (Wisconsin History Department), Documentary
History of the Ratification of the Constituiton (editor in
- Robin Einhorn, (Berkeley History Department) (author,
American Taxation, American Slavery).
- Moderator: Alan Tully (Chair, U Texas History), summary of
- Panel 3: Law panel: 3:15–5 pm, Eidman Courtroom
- Philip Bobbitt (U Texas Law) (author, Constitutional
- Lynn Baker (U. Texas Law) (author of Federalism and the
Double Standard of Judicial Review).
- Ernest Young (U. Texas Law) (author of Making Federalism
Doctrine: Fidelity, Institutional Competence, and Compensating
- Mitch Berman, summary of the book (U. Texas Law) (author of
Constitutional Decision Rules).
- Jordan Steiker, moderator (U. Texas Law).
About the book
Righteous Anger at the Wicked States is an explanation of the
Constitution in terms of what the Founders were trying to accomplish. Johnson
argues that the most pressing need to adopt the U.S. Constitution was to
allow the federal government to tax to pay off the debts of the common
defense. The Constitution went far beyond the immediate fiscal needs,
however, to create a supreme, three-part national government. The book argues
that the Founders' anger at the states for their duty to the united cause
explains both critical steps and the driving impetus for the Revolution.
According to Professor H. Jefferson Powell of Duke University School of Law,
"Calvin Johnson has written "an intellectually honest, incredibly erudite
description of the Constitution as an intensely nationalist instrument …
A fine achievement and a sophisticated book"
Johnson's thesis has been debated in panels at Yale, NYU and the Society
of Historians of the Early American Republic, Independence Mall,