Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
The Cloaking of Power – Montesquieu, Blackstone, and the Rise of Judicial Activism - Chicago Scholarship Online
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

The Cloaking of Power: Montesquieu, Blackstone, and the Rise of Judicial Activism

Paul O. Carrese


This book provides a provocative and original analysis of the intellectual sources of today's powerful judiciary, arguing that Montesquieu, in his Spirit of the Laws, first articulated a new conception of the separation of powers and of strong but subtle courts. Montesquieu instructed statesmen and judges to “cloak power” by placing the robed power at the center of politics, while concealing judges behind citizen juries and subtle reforms. Tracing Montesquieu's conception of judicial power through Blackstone, Hamilton, and Tocqueville, the book shows how it led to the prominence of judges, cou ... More

Keywords: judiciary, Montesquieu, Spirit of the Laws, United States, Blackstone, Hamilton, Tocqueville, Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr, human nature, civic duties

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2003 Print ISBN-13: 9780226094823
Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: March 2013 DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226094830.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Paul O. Carrese, author