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A Community Built on WordsThe Constitution in History and Politics$
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H. Jefferson Powell

Print publication date: 2002

Print ISBN-13: 9780226677231

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: March 2013

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226677224.001.0001

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1927: Justice Brandeis and the Final End of the State

1927: Justice Brandeis and the Final End of the State

XX. 1927: Justice Brandeis and the Final End of the State
A Community Built on Words
University of Chicago Press

In 1927, Justice Louis Brandeis wrote a justly famous opinion, which Justice Holmes joined, concurring in the Court's judgment in Whitney v. California. Whitney sustained a conviction under a California law prohibiting participation in the formation of a society to advocate criminal syndicalism, a concept the legislature defined as “any doctrine or precept advocating, teaching or aiding and abetting the commission of crime, sabotage (which word is hereby defined as meaning willful and malicious physical damage or injury to physical property), or unlawful acts of force and violence or unlawful methods of terrorism as a means of accomplishing a change in industrial ownership or control or effecting any political change.” Brandeis and Holmes thought the conviction a violation of the freedom of speech that the majority had assumed to be protected against state interference by the fourteenth amendment in Gitlow v. New York.

Keywords:   Justice Louis Brandeis, Whitney v. California, California law, conviction, physical damage, freedom of speech

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