Thursday, September 11, 2014

Lowe on Beard's Ideas That Matter

The SSRN papers from that symposium on Beard’s Economic Interpretation of the Constitution keep on coming.  The latest is Ideas that Matter: Parting Thoughts on Charles Beard on the 100th Anniversary of an Economic Interpretation, by Jessica Lowe, University of Virginia School of Law.  Here is the abstract:
Charles Beard's work is best known for advocating that material interests, not ideas, played the pivotal role in shaping the founding of the United States. But Beard was, in his own way, an idealist who saw history as a moral force. This brief essay, the conclusion to the publication of the October 2013 Miller Center/University of Virginia Law School symposium on the 100th Anniversary of Beard's An Economic Interpretation, sums up the conference and argues that Beard's real legacy is as a historian who believed in the power of ideas to create social change -- and in history as the pursuit of truth.