The Evolution of American Citizenship
November 9-11, 2012
The Constitution begins with "We the People. . .," signaling that it, unlike the Articles of Confederation, is an agreement among citizens and not merely a compact among sovereign states. Using various source materials, this seminar will explore how the meaning of citizenship has evolved since the American Revolution, with particular emphasis on the post-Civil War Reconstruction Amendments, which significantly altered the relationship between citizens and their state governments. The seminar will also explore how the Constitution regulates the relationship between governments and non-citizens. Core issues to be examined include: voting, civil rights, civil liberties, and immigration.