Originalism's False Promise (Reviewing Lee Strang's "Originalism's Promise") Forthcoming Faulkner Law Review Symposium

Faulkner Law Review

34 Pages Posted:

See all articles by Eric Segall

Eric Segall

Georgia State University College of Law

Date Written: September 29, 2020

Abstract

This Review Essay of Professor Lee Strang's Book "Originalism's Promise:A Natural Law Account of the American Constitution" suggests that although the book admirably tries to unify various strands of modern originalism, it fails to persuasively justify its religious-like devotion to originalism or its reverence for the Founding. Strang does not wrestle with slavery, sexism, or segregation nor does he explain how .the worlds of 1789 and 1868 can help today's judges who must apply imprecise text to modern problems.

Like most originalists, almost all of Strang's theoretical constructs lead to conservative results that cannot be justified by reliance on the Constitution's original meaning nor does Strang follow through consistently on his formulations for how judges should deal with non-originalist precedent, which makes up the great body of constitutional law. The book is a classic example of originalism as faith.

Keywords: Originalism, Consitutional Interpretation, The Supreme Court

Suggested Citation

Segall, Eric, Originalism's False Promise (Reviewing Lee Strang's "Originalism's Promise") Forthcoming Faulkner Law Review Symposium (September 29, 2020). Faulkner Law Review, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=

Eric Segall (Contact Author)

Georgia State University College of Law ( email )

P.O. Box 4037
Atlanta, GA 30302-4037
United States

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