Liberty's Blueprint

How Madison and Hamilton Wrote the Federalist Papers, Defined the Constitution, and Made Democracy Safe for the World


By Michael Meyerson

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This item is a preorder. Your payment method will be charged immediately, and the product is expected to ship on or around June 30, 2009. This date is subject to change due to shipping delays beyond our control.

Aside from the Constitution itself, there is no more important document in American politics and law than The Federalist-the series of essays written by Alexander Hamilton and James Madison to explain the proposed Constitution to the American people and persuade them to ratify it. Today, amid angry debate over what the Constitution means and what the framers’ “original intent” was, The Federalist is more important than ever, offering the best insight into how the framers thought about the most troubling issues of American government and how the various clauses of the Constitution were meant to be understood. Michael Meyerson’s Liberty’s Blueprint provides a fascinating window into the fleeting, and ultimately doomed, friendship between Hamilton and Madison, as well as a much-needed introduction to understanding how the lessons of The Federalist are relevant for resolving contemporary constitutional issues from medical marijuana to the war on terrorism. This book shows that, when properly read, The Federalist is not a “conservative” manifesto but a document that rightfully belongs to all Americans across the political spectrum.
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  • The Historian
    “[Meyerson] reminds readers of the critical role played by The Federalist Papers not only in achieving ratification of the Constitution, but in the continuing effort to understand the nature of the government created under it.”

On Sale
Jun 30, 2009
Page Count
336 pages
Basic Books

Michael Meyerson

About the Author

Michael I. Meyerson is a professor of law at the University of Baltimore, specializing in constitutional law and American legal history. The author of over twenty scholarly articles on Constitutional law and legal history, he lives in Ellicott City, Maryland.

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