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How Progressives Rewrote the Constitution

Tuesday June 2006


Richard A. Epstein James Parker Hall Distinguished Service Professor of Law, University of Chicago Peter and Kirstin Bedford Senior Fellow, Hoover Institution

Introductory Remarks: Robert Rosenkranz, Chairman of the Board, Delphi Financial Group, Inc.

Richard Epstein is one of the nation’s most prolific legal scholars, with writings spanning almost every area of private law. He edits a leading torts casebook, and he has been an insightful critic of modern products liability law for more than three decades. He is also a prominent authority on pharmaceutical development and regulation.

Professor Epstein is perhaps best known publicly, however, for his exhaustive writings on constitutional law, from his seminal Takings: Private Property and the Power of Eminent Domain to his trilogy on classical liberalism, Simple Rules for a Complex World, Principles for a Free Society, and Skepticism and Freedom. Out of this constitutional vein comes his latest book, How Progressives Rewrote the Constitution.

Professor Epstein’s new book looks empirically at Supreme Court history. He documents how the “progressives” radically departed from the Supreme Court’s traditional understandings of economic liberty and federalism, and, in the process, replaced competitive markets with government-created monopolies and cartels. Professor Epstein is an entertaining speaker, and we hope you can join us to hear about his most recent work.