Thursday, February 21, 2013

Public and Private: An Institute for Constitutional History Summer Seminar

[We have the following announcement from our friends at the Institute for Constitutional History.]

The Institute for Constitutional History is pleased to announce a residential summer research seminar for advanced graduate students and junior faculty, which will be co-sponsored by the Stanford Constitutional Law Center. This year's seminar is entitled “Public and Private.” [The instructors are Hendrik Hartog, the Class of 1921 Bicentennial Professor in the History of American Law and Liberty and the Director of Princeton University's Program in American Studies, and Larry Kramer, who became President of The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation in September 2012, and served from 2004 to 2012 as Richard E. Lang Professor of Law and Dean of Stanford Law School.]


The notion that private freedoms are constituted and structured through legal rules, and especially constitutional decisions, is conventional wisdom.  But how have the boundaries between public and private been negotiated in constitutional controversies?  How have understandings of private selves and private institutions and private rights changed as they confronted or engaged with the demands of constitutional law?  We are interested in studies across American history and across the full range of potential intersection: "new" and "old" property, public lands and private resources, charters and franchises and corporations, regulation of wealth and health and sex and family, regulation versus outsourcing, public schools versus charter schools, taxes versus regulation, as well as the full range of civil liberties articulated across American constitutional history.  We are also interested in hearing about work that attempts to articulate what it means to describe an American constitutional order as distinctively (or indistinctly) capitalistic.


The seminar will meet at Stanford Law School, from July 7-13, 2013. The Institute for Constitutional History will reimburse participants for their travel expenses (up to $350), provide accommodation at the Munger Graduate Residence on the Stanford campus, and offer a modest stipend to cover food and additional expenses. Seminar enrollment is limited to fifteen participants.


Applicants for the seminar should send a copy of their curriculum vitae, a brief description (three to five pages) of the research project to be pursued during the seminar, and a short statement on how this seminar will be useful to them in their research, teaching, or professional development. Materials will be accepted until April 15, 2013, and only by email at Successful applicants will be notified soon thereafter.

For further information, please contact Maeva Marcus at (202) 994-6562 or send an email to