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Publisher's Summary

First published in September 2005 and based on a series of lectures delivered at Harvard, Active Liberty is a tight, extremely readable, almost memoir-like guide to interpreting the Constitution. Written by a justice of the Supreme Court, it focuses on a pragmatic approach to this great document that may become crucial as the Supreme Court faces deeply divisive decisions.
©2005 Stephen Breyer; (P)2006 Recorded Books, LLC.

Critic Reviews

"Breyer's prose is admirably simple and clear, and his discussion shows a keen legal intellect that espouses broad values rather than narrow theories, and a deep, humane concern with fostering democracy and the well-being of the citizenry. This will be essential reading at a possibly watershed moment for the Supreme Court." (Publishers Weekly)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
  • Maki
  • New York, NY, USA
  • 09-04-07

Engaging, If Somewhat Dense

Maybe if you're a constituional scholar or lawyer, this stuff is easy to follow, but for a lay person, it wasn't quite as easy to digest. Still, I very much looked forward to hearing this book read by Justice Breyer himself, and I found his philosophies and justifications quite sound and very convincing. I will probably have to re-read this book several times to get every aspect of it, but I found the exercise very challenging and worthwhile.

8 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Maggie
  • Baton Rouge, LA, United States
  • 12-24-10

excellent and worth the time

since i have no legal training, i too found breyer's ideas densely presented but still could detect the value of this audio, which is like having a very smart legal scholar spend time telling me what he thinks. with several listens, i will know far more than i did before and have spent my time well. i greatly appreciate breyer's efforts of forming up his thoughts and then presenting them in his own voice. his ideas help me to re-invest in hope that "truth will out" ... an excellent antidote to the "nattering nabobs of negativism" that stream from today's media.