On Thursday, September 17, 2020, the American Founding Group and the School of Public and International Affairs hosted a celebration of Constitution Day. The centerpiece of these festivities was a virtual lecture open to the public by Professor Michael Zuckert, the Nancy R. Dreux Professor of Political Science, Emeritus, University of Notre Dame, entitled “The Consistency of James Madison: the Bill of Rights”.
This event is part of the University of Georgia’s Signature Lecture series.
Thank you to the Jack Miller Center and the Wilson Center for Humanities and Arts for their generous support of Constitution Day.
Constitution Day Itinerary
|2:30 pm||Virtual Lecture||
Keynote Lecture by Professor Michael Zuckert entitled “The Consistency of James Madison: the Bill of Rights,” followed by a short, moderated question and answer session
What is Constitution Day?
Constitution Day is the annual celebration of the day that representatives to the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia completed and signed the U.S. Constitution in 1787. The observance of this day began as “I am an American Day” in 1940 and later as Citizenship Day in 1952 when the celebration was moved to September 17 to commemorate the signing of the original document. Constitution Day as we observe it today was recognized as a federal holiday in 2004, when Senator Robert Byrd passed a bill designating September 17 as the day for citizens to commemorate the signing of the U.S. Constitution and to thoughtfully engage with the nation’s founding document.
About the Speaker
Michael Zuckert is Nancy R. Dreux Professor of Political Science Emeritus at University of Notre Dame. He is currently visiting Professor at the School for Civic and Economic Thought and Leadership at Arizona State University. He has taught and written in the areas of modern political thought and American constitutionalism. He was the founding editor of the journal American Political Thought.
Zuckert is author of several books, including The Anti-Federal Writings of the Melancton Smith; Launching Liberalism: John Locke and the Liberal Tradition; Thomas Jefferson and the Politics of Nature: Essays in Response to Michael Zuckert’s Natural Rights Republic; and Natural Rights and the New Republicanism. Zucketrt was also senior scholar for Liberty! (1997), a six-hour public television series on the American Revolution, and served as senior advisor on the PBS series on Benjamin Franklin (2002) and Alexander Hamilton (2007).
Previous Constitution Day Events
Jack Rakove, “What Did the Constitution Really Mean? Two Interpretations”
Akhil Reed Amar, “The Constitution at a Crossroads”
Michael J. Klarman, “The Constitution as a Coup Against Public Opinion”
Carol Berkin, “Born in Crisis: The Emergence in the 1790s of an American Identity”
Alan Taylor, “Competing Constitutions: North America, 1783-1795”