Sunday, November 17, 2019

Mikhail to Lead ICH Seminar on the Creation of the Constitution

[We have word from our friends at the Institute for Constitutional History and the New-York Historical Society of its latest seminar, The Creation of the Constitution, led by my Georgetown Law colleague John Mikhail.  Note the deadline of December 20!  DRE.]

Few events have had more impact on American history than the framing and ratification of the Constitution. This seminar is designed to offer students with serious interests in history, political theory, and constitutional law an opportunity to learn more about these events by examining how the Constitution was created, debated, ratified, and interpreted during the origins of the Republic. Special attention will be given to early constitutional controversies involving implied powers, including slavery, western lands, the removal power, amendments, the federal judiciary, and the creation of a national bank.

Instructor.  John Mikhail is Agnes N. Williams Research Professor and Associate Dean for Research and Academic Programs at Georgetown University Law Center, where he teaches courses in constitutional law and constitutional history. He is the author of Elements of Moral Cognition (Cambridge University Press, 2011) and has published articles and essays in a wide range of academic journals, including Stanford Law Review, Virginia Law Review, Georgetown Law Journal, Law & History Review, Ethics, Trends in Cognitive Sciences, and Jerusalem Review of Legal Studies. Professor Mikhail's research has been featured in Science, Boston Review, The National Law Journal, The Washington Post, and other media outlets. His most recent scholarship focuses on the drafting, ratification, and early interpretations of the Constitution.

Logistics.  Thursday nights, 6:00–8:00 p.m., January 16, February 6, 27, March 19, April 2, 9, 2020. The seminar will meet at The George Washington University Law School, 2000 H Street NW, Washington, DC 20052.

Application Process.  The seminar is designed for graduate students and junior faculty in history, political science, law, and related disciplines. All participants will be expected to complete the assigned readings and participate in seminar discussions. Although the Institute cannot offer academic credit directly for the seminar, students may be able to earn graduate credit through their home departments by completing an independent research project in conjunction with the seminar. Please consult with your advisor and/or director of graduate studies about these possibilities. Space is limited, so applicants should send a copy of their C.V. and a short statement on how this seminar will be useful to them in their research, teaching, or professional development. Materials will be accepted only by email at until December 20, 2019. Successful applicants will be notified soon thereafter. For further information, please contact Maeva Marcus at (202) 994-6562 or send an email to

Additional Information.  There is no tuition or other charge for this seminar, though participants will be expected to acquire the assigned books on their own.

About ICH.  The Institute for Constitutional History (ICH) is the nation’s premier institute dedicated to ensuring that future generations of Americans understand the substance and historical development of the U.S. Constitution. Located at the New-York Historical Society and the George Washington University Law School, the Institute is co-sponsored by the American Historical Association, the Organization of American Historians, and the American Political Science Association. The Association of American Law Schools is a cooperating entity. ICH prepares junior scholars and college instructors to convey to their readers and students the important role the Constitution has played in shaping American society. ICH also provides a national forum for the preparation and dissemination of humanistic, interdisciplinary scholarship on American constitutional history.