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Professor Stephen Griffin hosts constitutional law conference with leading scholars

March 08, 2024 9:30 AM
Stephen Griffin



Tulane Law Professor Stephen Griffin is hosting a national scholarly conference on the significance of Reconstruction and the Fourteenth Amendment in the U.S. Constitution on Friday and Saturday, March 15 and 16.

In conjunction with the George and Ann Richards Civil War Era Center at Penn State and the Journal of American Constitutional History, the conference is titled “The Significance of Reconstruction in Constitutional History, Law, and Politics.”  It draws more than a dozen nationally-recognized constitutional law scholars and commentators, among them Mark Graber (Maryland), Randall Kennedy (Harvard), Jack Balkin (Yale), Reva Siegel (Yale), Sanford Levinson (Texas), Anne Twitty (Stanford), Farah Peterson (Chicago), and Jamelle Bouie (The New York Times). Tulane Law Professors Robert Westley and Evelyn Atkinson also will be participating.

View the conference schedule here.

The conference will feature an interdisciplinary group of the leading scholars on American constitutionalism during Reconstruction who will examine how the post-Civil War Amendments should be understood from historical, political science, and legal perspectives.  The purpose of the two-day, five-panel conference is to explore how Republican framers were trying to resolve what they perceived to be the most pressing constitutional problems of the 1860s with the conceptual and political tools available at the time, and what citizens in 2024 should make of their efforts.  The conference is occasioned by the publication of Professor Mark Graber’s book Punish Treason, Reward Loyalty: The Forgotten Goals of Constitutional Reform after the Civil War (University Press of Kansas, 2023).  The papers from the conference will be published by the Journal of American Constitutional History.

The event will be held in Room 110 of Tulane Law School, John Giffen Weinmann Hall, 6329 Freret Street from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Friday and 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday.