Desperately Seeking CertaintyThe Misguided Quest for Constitutional Foundations

Desperately Seeking CertaintyThe Misguided Quest for Constitutional Foundations

Daniel A. Farber and Suzanna Sherry

Print publication date: 2013

ISBN: 9780226238081

Publisher: University of Chicago Press

Abstract

This book attacks the current legal vogue for grand unified theories of constitutional interpretation. On both the Right and the Left, prominent legal scholars are attempting to build all of constitutional law from a single foundational idea. The book finds that in the end no single, all-encompassing theory can successfully guide judges or provide definitive or even sensible answers to every constitutional question. This book reveals how problematic foundationalism is and shows how the pragmatic, multifaceted common law methods already used by the Court provide a far better means of reaching sound decisions and controlling judicial discretion than do any of the grand theories.