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Reviews

"Constitutional Democracy is, quite simply, a masterpiece. Only someone with Walter Murphy's immense learning could so effectively bridge the gap between constitutional law and political philosophy, and—as a bonus—provide a model of how material from other countries can be used to illuminate American law and politics. Only someone with Murphy's playful intellect could make an analysis of the creation and maintenance of free republics so readable and entertaining. One can confidently predict that this marvelous book will become a classic."

"Walter Murphy, one of the world's outstanding constitutional scholars, draws on encyclopedic knowledge of political systems on every continent and throughout history to illuminate the myriad ways in which constitutional democracies have been and can be created and maintained. Grand in scope, profound in insight, this book will long stand as the definitive exploration of the tensions inherent in its title—the role of constitutionalism in constraining democracy—and of the efforts of history's great statesmen and women to resolve those tensions."

"This long-awaited magnum opus explores the most important, complex, and perilous of political projects: constitutional design, maintenance, and change. Possessed of a matchless breadth of knowledge and a unique gift for clear and witty prose, Murphy lays bare the lessons of constitution-making from ancient Greece to the present day and from America and Europe to Asia and Africa. Drawing on a half-century's study of political science, philosophy, history, and law, Murphy's Constitutional Democracy is essential reading for scholars, citizens, and would-be statesmen who seek to understand the difficult political choices confronting all who seek just and stable democratic governance."

"This is a significant, impressive work of constitutional theory in its largest and most important sense."

"The phrase 'instant classic' may be an oxymoron, but if it can be fairly applied to any recent work in the field of constitutional theory, this is the one."

"Constitutional Democracy is an extraordinarily ambitious book, taking as its model nothing less than Aristotle's Politics."

"This fine book brings to bear Walter Murphy’s manifold gifts: breadth of knowledge about political systems around the world and throughout history, keen critical learning about ancient and modern political thought, deep understanding of constitutional law, and a clear and clever style."

"In this magnum opus, Walter Murphy tells [the] story with all the erudition and skill that he has gathered in a lifetime of the study of political systems."