Simple-Minded Originalism

13 Pages Posted: 19 Aug 2008

See all articles by Larry Alexander

Larry Alexander

University of San Diego School of Law

Date Written: August 18, 2008


In this essay I defend the unfashionable, maligned, and ridiculed view that interpretation of the Constitution is a search for its authorially-intended meaning, and that constitutional interpretation is no different in this respect from the interpretation of shopping lists, toy assembly instructions, and ordinary conversations.

Keywords: Adler & Bix, legal philosophy and jurisprudence, constitutional interpretation

JEL Classification: K00, K10

Suggested Citation

Alexander, Lawrence, Simple-Minded Originalism (August 18, 2008). San Diego Legal Studies Paper No. 08-067, Available at SSRN: or

Lawrence Alexander (Contact Author)

University of San Diego School of Law ( email )

5998 Alcala Park
San Diego, CA 92110-2492
United States
619-260-2317 (Phone)
619-260-4728 (Fax)

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