The priests of our democracythe supreme court academic freedom and the anti communist purge reminded me once again of the pleasure to be had from reading a well organized balanced and relevant historical perspective on issues that affect america today. Priests of our democracy tells of the teachers and professors who resisted the witch hunt those who collaborated and those whose battles led to landmark supreme court decisions it traces the political fortunes of academic freedom beginning in the late 19th century both on campus and in the courts. Heins is a civil liberties lawyer and her particular aim in priests of our democracy is to examine the supreme courts role in defining a constitutional foundation for academic freedom especially during the mccarthy years she shows that the supreme court in the 1960s reversed decades of precedent to assert that academic freedom is essential for the maintenance of democracy and that . Of academic freedom beginning in the late 19th century both on campus and in the courts combining political and legal history with wrenching personal stories the book details how the anti communist excesses of the 1950s inspired the supreme court to recognize the vital role of teachers and professors in american democracy. Get this from a library priests of our democracy the supreme court academic freedom and the anti communist purge marjorie heins in the early 1950s new york citys teachers and professors became the targets of massive investigations into their political beliefs and associations those who refused to cooperate in the
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