The Limits of Sovereignty (Large Print)
Property Confiscation in the Union and the Confederacy during the Civil War
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Format Details: 16pt, Verdana
· "In a focused and detailed analysis of confiscation by Union and Confederacy governments, Professor Daniel Hamilton reveals the underexplored effects of this dynamic epoch on constitutional understandings of property. . . . The Limits of Sovereignty is an accessible and compact book that offers valuable insight into the Civil War era and will be appealing to anyone interested in the story of property under the Constitution." —Harvard Law Review
· “In The Limits of Sovereignty, Daniel Hamilton uses the mostly ignored debates over confiscation to explore the tensions between individual property rights and community rights throughout the nineteenth century. This is a wonderfully engaging and thoughtful book—one that I have learned much from.” —Alfred L. Brophy, University of AlabamaLawSchool
· “Clearly written and richly detailed, The Limits of Sovereignty demonstrates the crucial role debates over confiscation during the Civil War played in the construction of modern constitutional liberalism. This fascinating study will be of interest to specialists in American constitutional, legal, and political development, as well as to general readers wishing to learn about a vital, but often unexplored, episode of constitutional policy making during the Civil War.” —Mark A. Graber, University of Maryland
About the Book
Americans take for granted that government does not have the right to permanently seize private property without just compensation. Yet for much of American history, such a view constituted the weaker side of an ongoing argument about government sovereignty and individual rights. What brought about this drastic shift in legal and political thought? Daniel W. Hamilton locates that change in the crucible of the Civil War. In the early days of the war, Congress passed the First and Second Confiscation Acts, authorizing the Union to seize private property in the rebellious states of the Confederacy, and the Confederate Congress responded with the broader Sequestration Act. The competing acts fueled a fierce, sustained debate among legislators and lawyers about the principles underlying alternative ideas of private property and state power, a debate which by 1870 was increasingly dominated by today's view of more limited government power. Through its exploration of this little-studied consequence of the debates over confiscation during the Civil War, The Limits of Sovereignty will be essential to an understanding of the place of private property in American law and legal history.
About the Author
Daniel W. Hamilton is assistant professor at Chicago-Kent College of Law.
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