On Human Rights and Majority Politics: Felix Frankfurter's Democratic Theory

31 Pages Posted: 5 Feb 2019 Last revised: 17 Oct 2019

Date Written: January 20, 2019

Abstract

This symposium piece is primarily a reading of Felix Frankfurter's dissent in West Virginia State Board of Education v. Barnette, attempting to draw some lessons from his theory of majoritarian rights for our own moment of crisis for the human rights movement. The situations then and now are only partly comparable, but Frankfurter's call for allowing democratic processes to self-correct even when elite shortcuts beckon—including when it comes to defining and protecting rights—provides food for thought.

Note: This is a first draft; comments welcome.

Keywords: Human Rights, Democracy, Majority Rule, Felix Frankfurter

Suggested Citation

Moyn, Samuel, On Human Rights and Majority Politics: Felix Frankfurter's Democratic Theory (January 20, 2019). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3319515 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3319515

Samuel Moyn (Contact Author)

Yale University ( email )

MA 02138
United States
2128543009 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://campuspress.yale.edu/samuelmoyn

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Downloads
359
Abstract Views
1,986
rank
83,226
PlumX Metrics