Panel on Corpus Linguistics & the Second Amendment

  • Date:
  • May 06, 2020

Last week, Darrell held a virtual version of an event we had planned to conduct in person: Corpus Linguistics, Constitutional Interpretation, and the Right to Keep and Bear Arms.

Here’s the event description: Constitutional interpretation has increasingly turned to history and a close reading of the text to decipher meaning. Scholars have begun mining newly available databases containing thousands of works and millions of words from the founding era to shed light on questions about the typical use of words at the time the Constitution was drafted and ratified--including the Second Amendment’s right "to keep and bear arms." Darrell Miller hosted a discussion with Duke Law Professor Steve Sachs and Neal Goldfarb, Dean's Visiting Scholar at Georgetown Law School, about how this work on corpus linguistics can or should inform debates about the meaning of constitutional text and the Second Amendment. The event is co-sponsored by the Center for Firearms Law, the Federalist Society, and the American Constitution Society.

Check out the video below.