In The People's Constitution, Wilfred Codrington and John Kowal, present an alternative history to our founding document and a vital guide to our national charter. They introduce all of the constitution's framers: not just the Framers but "the visionaries and gadflies whose passion and perseverance helped ensure that our national charter could change with the times through periodic infusions of popular input." That history, they argue, "has been, for the most part, an inspiring story of progressive legal change, driven by powerful social movements and an evolving array of civil society organizations." But in our fractured, hyper-partisan politics of today, are we still able to amend the Constitution?
Presented as part of The Polonsky Exhibition of The New York Public Library's Treasures, which showcases some of the most extraordinary items from the 56 million in our collections. Among them is one of the 14 handwritten copies of the Bill of Rights that George Washington requested be produced for Congress and each of the 13 states. The event will begin with a short curator talk on the history of the library's copy.