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From the Editor

The constitutional history of the United States is one of the richest in the world. The federal constitution has provided inspiration to constitutional drafters, judges, and researchers for over two centuries; while the neglected State constitutions continue to be a source of constitutional innovation and development. Two hundred years of legal and political developments have produced a complex, multi-leveled system that is daunting for insiders and near impossible for outsiders to negotiate. Beyond their scholarly interest, questions of constitutional history and original intent continue to play a dominant role in very live issues of American constitutional law and interpretation, meaning that an understanding of America’s constitutional development is essential for all lawyers in the US.

Our United States Constitutional Law service aims to provide the most comprehensive reference resource available for understanding the full legal and political history of American constitutionalism. US Constitutional Law will contain an archive of primary materials and expert commentary stretching from the colonial era and founding through to the modern day. By offering ready access to a broad historical sweep of archival materials, edited by leading scholars of American constitutional history, alongside leading contemporary analysis, US Constitutional Law will offer the most complete reference yet on how to understand the historical evolution of constitutionalism in America.

Highlights of the service include the full reference edition of American Constitutionalism, edited by Howard Gilman and Mark Graber, Neil Cogan’s magisterial collection of materials on the Bill of Rights and his collection on the Reconstruction Amendments. More reference works and major monographs will be added on a continuous basis as the service grows.

A central ambition of the service is to make accessible the rich and neglected jurisprudence of State constitutionalism. We launched the service with the Oxford Commentaries on the State Constitutions of the US series, edited by Alan Tarr, which offers article-by-article commentaries tracing the history and modern practice of State constitutionalism.

Driven by our Oxford Law Citator tool the service makes the full range of American constitutional law easily accessible and cross-searchable, opening up a rich repository of reference materials for the next generation of legal research and teaching.

Alex Flach
Commissioning Editor, Law
Oxford University Press