ABOUT THIS BOOK
First published more than forty years ago, Robert G. McCloskey's classic work on the Supreme Court's role in constructing the U.S. Constitution has introduced generations of students to the workings of our nation's highest court. In this fourth edition, Sanford Levinson extends McCloskey's magisterial treatment to address the Court's most recent decisions, including its controversial ruling in Bush v. Gore and its expansion of sexual privacy in Lawrence v. Texas. The book's chronology of important Supreme Court decisions and itsannotated bibliographical essay have also been updated.
As in previous editions, McCloskey's original text remains unchanged. He argues that the Court's strength has always been its sensitivity to the changing political scene, as well as its reluctance to stray too far from the main currents of public sentiment. Levinson's two new chapters show how McCloskey's approach continues to illuminate recent developments, such as the Court's seeming return to its pre-1937 role as "umpire" of the federal system. It is in Bush v. Gore, however, where the implications of McCloskey's interpretation stand out most clearly.
The best and most concise account of the Supreme Court and its place in American politics, McCloskey's wonderfully readable book is an essential guide to its past, present, and future prospects of this institution.