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Considering Reparations for the Dred Scott Case

THE DRED SCOTT CASE: HISTORICAL AND CONTEMPORARY PERSPECTIVES, Christopher Bracey, David Konig, and Paul Finkelman, eds., Ohio State University Press, 2010

U of Alabama Public Law Research Paper No. 997900

27 Pages Posted: 4 Jul 2007 Last revised: 17 Dec 2009

Alfred L. Brophy

University of Alabama - School of Law

Abstract

"Considering Reparations for the Dred Scott Case," which was prepared for a volume reassessing Dred Scott on its 150th anniversary, asks how the case might fit into discussion of reparations for slavery. Is some reparative action advisable for that case standing by itself? Or might Dred Scott be used as part of a larger discussion? The essay begins with a brief assessment of where the movement for reparations for slavery is right now; then it turns to the case and asks what the Supreme Court's culpability might be and what, if any, harm the opinion causes today. The paper then turns to what reparations models might fit Dred Scott today, including a truth commission, apology, or reconstructed doctrine surrounding the Reconstruction Amendments.

Keywords: legal history, dred scott, reparations, slavery, truth commission

Suggested Citation

Brophy, Alfred L., Considering Reparations for the Dred Scott Case. THE DRED SCOTT CASE: HISTORICAL AND CONTEMPORARY PERSPECTIVES, Christopher Bracey, David Konig, and Paul Finkelman, eds., Ohio State University Press, 2010; U of Alabama Public Law Research Paper No. 997900. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=997900

Alfred L. Brophy (Contact Author)

University of Alabama - School of Law ( email )

P.O. Box 870382
Tuscaloosa, AL 35487
United States
405-209-5781 (Phone)

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