Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Justice Stevens on the Supreme Court

I just finished reading Justice Stevens highly readable, insightful, and surprisingly substantive book, Five Chiefs: A Supreme Court Memoir (Little, Brown 2011). Always an engaging writer, Justice Stevens provides a highly personal account of his tenure on the Court, organized around the five Chief Justices with whom he served. Along the way, we learn about his personal history and path to the Court, how the Court functions on a day-to-day basis, the almost invariably warm personal relations among the justices (which doesn't prevent Stevens from taking issue with several of his colleagues or pointing out their endearing or not-so-endearing character traits), and Stevens's views about various landmark cases decided by the Court, while he was a member. This book is highly recommended for all readers with any interest in the US Supreme Court and constitutional, regardless of prior expertise. It should be required reading for all law professors and students.

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