Constructing a New American Constitution

Constitutional Commentary 34:1 (Fall 2010): 119-37

10 Pages Posted: 6 Jun 2012

See all articles by Keith E. Whittington

Keith E. Whittington

Princeton University - Department of Political Science

Date Written: June 6, 2012


The distinction between constitutional interpretation and constitutional construction has been taken up in various places in constitutional and legal scholarship. In this article, I reintroduce the concept of constitutional construction and its potential uses, consider the extent to which courts might engage in constitutional construction, and examine whether the process of constitutional construction is avoidable or excludable with a sufficiently refined theory of constitutional interpretation.

Keywords: originalism, constitutional construction, judicial review, constitutional politics, popular constitutionalism

Suggested Citation

Whittington, Keith E., Constructing a New American Constitution (June 6, 2012). Constitutional Commentary 34:1 (Fall 2010): 119-37. Available at SSRN:

Keith E. Whittington (Contact Author)

Princeton University - Department of Political Science ( email )

Corwin Hall
Princeton, NJ 08544-1012
United States
609-258-3453 (Phone)
609-258-1110 (Fax)


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