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Location: The Heritage Foundation's Allison Auditorium
What would it take for America to become - and remain - a
self-governing people? Colleen Sheehan traces the evolution
of Madison's conception of the politics of communication and public
opinion throughout the Founding period, demonstrating how "the
sovereign public" would form and rule in America. Far from
ignoring the need for an active, virtuous citizenry, Madison's
vision for the new nation rested on a notion of republican
self-government that permeated the American spirit and the way of
life. This overlooked aspect of Madison's thinking is an
important part of the American Idea.
Colleen A. Sheehan is a Professor of Political Science at
Villanova University and has served in the Pennsylvania House of
Representatives. She is the co-editor of Friends of the
Constitution: Writings of the Other Federalists 1787-1788 and
author of numerous articles on the American Founding and
eighteenth-century political and moral thought. Her most
recent publication is James Madison and the Spirit of
Republican Self-Government (Cambridge University Press).
Professor Sheehan received a B.A from Eisenhower College and an
M.A. and Ph.D. from Claremont Graduate School.
Copies of James Madison and the Spirit of Republican
will be available for purchase and to be signed by the author.
More About the Speakers
Colleen Sheehan, Ph.D.
Professor of Political Science, Villanova
and Author of James Madison and the Spirit of Republican
Matthew Spalding, Ph.D.
Vice President, American Studies and Director, B. Kenneth Simon Center for Principles and Politics