A tiny, ebullient Jew who started as America's leading liberal and ended as its most famous judicial conservative. A Klansman who became an absolutist advocate of free speech and civil rights. A backcountry lawyer who started off trying cases about cows and went on to conduct the most important international trial ever. A self-invented, tall-tale Westerner who narrowly missed the presidency but expanded individual freedom beyond what anyone before had dreamed.
Four more different men could hardly be imagined. Yet they had certain things in common. Each was a self-made man who came from humble beginnings on the edge of poverty. Each had driving ambition and a will to succeed. Each was, in his own way, a genius. They began as close allies and friends of FDR, but the quest to shape a new Constitution led them to competition and sometimes outright warfare.
Scorpions tells the story of these four great justices: their relationship with Roosevelt, with each other, and with the turbulent world of the Great Depression, World War II, and the Cold War. It also serves as a history of the modern Constitution itself.
©2010 Noah Feldman (P)2010 Hachette Audio
This is a very well written and well narrated book. As has been pointed out by previous reviewers the book is narrated by Cotter Smith and not Professor Feldman. The book focuses on the lives of four of FDR's Supreme Court Justices- Jackson, Douglas, Frankfurter and Black- all of whom had a very significant impact on the history of the Supreme Court from the New Deal era to the current day. Professor Feldman does an excellent job discussing the backgrounds of the four justices and how their education, social and political experiences framed their view of jurisprudence. For readers who are very interested in the Supreme Court and how it has become so important in the modern day political era this is a great listen. I would also recommend that after listening to this volume, readers may also want to listen to Jeff Shesol's well written and narrated book "Supreme Power" which focuses on FDR's attempt to pack the Supreme Court. While the court packing scheme is discussed in Professor Feldman's book, it is justifiably given less space than in Mr. Shesol's book. I would strongly recommend both books. Great additions to the Audible Library
A very informative book, with a very good narrator. I learned much about the four Justices in the book and it left me wanting to learn more about them and the time period. The behind the scenes politics of the Supreme Court then and the Justices' interactions with FDR and the New Deal were unique in history.
This book made a very recent road trip fly by. I enjoy a great diversity of books. This book has to be my top five. Its a perspective of the great depression, war time and post war time which I found surprisingly fascinating. I would't hesitate to recommend this to a friend.
A highly enjoyable and memorable account featuring four of the greatest Supreme Court Justices in our history and some of the landmark cases in which they were called upon to decide. In his exceptionally well written and well narrated book, Noah Feldman paints amazing true to life portraits including the judicial philosophies and striking personalities of these complicated men and their very contentious relationships with each other.
This peek into history reads like a novel and the narrator (not Noah Feldman, but Cotter Smith) does an outstanding job of drawing you into the personalities and issues of the period. While I have not quite finished this audio book, I am enjoying it immensely and congratulate Professor Feldman on his excellent work.
There are no listener reviews for this title yet.
Report Inappropriate Content