Most Americans think they know what the Constitution says but few have actually examined it. Here is an opportunity to review the concepts and composition of the document that functions as the legal foundation and framework of the nation. The Constitution provides principles for federal relations with the nation’s constituent states, citizens, and inhabitants. It has deployed a constitutional system called federalism. Its hallmarks have featured dual sovereignty, delegated and reserved powers, and guarantees of personal civil liberties and rights.
Thomas J. Davis teaches U.S. constitutional and legal history at ASU and has taught as a visiting professor of law at the ASU College of Law. As an historian and lawyer, in addition to constitutional matters he focuses on civil rights (particularly on issues of race, identity and law), employment, and property law. He received his Ph.D. in U.S. history from Columbia University and his JD cum laude from the University at Buffalo Law School. He is the author most recently of History of African Americans: Exploring Diverse Roots (Santa Barbara CA, 2016).