States' Rights and American Federalism
A Documentary History
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The debate over states' rights versus federalism in America is one that has raged since our country's founding. Arguments over the interpretation of the Constitution and the meaning of power and its distribution among the states' governments echoes in governmental chambers even today. Students can trace the history and development of issues surrounding this debate, as well as the reactions to them, through this unique and comprehensive collection of over 65 primary documents. Court cases, opinion pieces, speeches and many other documents bring to life the controversies surrounding the debate. Explanatory introductions to documents aid users in understanding the various arguments put forth in deliberations over different governmental matters, while illuminating the significance of each document.
Drake and Nelson trace the origins and changes in the nature of states' rights and American federalism using carefully chosen documents to reflect the fact that the tension and interaction between the states' governments and the national government define the ideals and provide the means for realistic achievement of these ideals. Documents can be easily accessed through five different sections, each section exploring a specific period in history and contributing to the understanding of the debate. The introductory and explanatory text help readers understand the nature of the conflicts, the issues being contested, the social and cultural pressures that shaped each debate, and the manner in which the passions of individual government officials, justices, and our presidents affected the development of policies concerning states' rights and federalism.
- Table of Contents
Chronology of Key Events in States' Rights and American Federalism
States' Rights and American Federalism in the American Founding Era, 1620-1789
Federalism and the Meaning of the Tenth Amendment, 1789-1835
States' Rights in the Antebellem Period and Civil War, 1828-1865
Changes Involving States Rights and Federalism from the Civil War to the New Deal, 1865-1940
States' Rights and American Federalism from the New Deal to the Present, 1940-1998
The true value of this work centers on the fact that it helps bring to light those historical documents that no doubt represent significant contributions to our nation's history but remain in the shadows of those few documents found in almost every text book published in U.S. history. This book is highly recommended.