Jack N. Rakove

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Jack Norman Rakove (born June 4, 1947) is an American historian, author, professor at Stanford University, and Pulitzer Prize winner.


Rakove was born in Chicago to Political Science Professor Milton L. Rakove (1918–1983) and his wife, Shirley. The elder Rakove taught at the University of Illinois at Chicago (1957–1983) and Barat College (Lake Forest, Illinois). Jack Rakove earned his AB in 1968 from Haverford College and his PhD in 1975 from Harvard University. At Harvard, he was a student of Bernard Bailyn.

Rakove is the W.R. Coe Professor of History and American Studies and professor of political science at Stanford University, where he has taught since 1980. He also taught at Colgate University from 1975 to 1980. He has been a visiting professor at the NYU School of Law.

Rakove won the 1997 Pulitzer Prize for History for Original Meanings: Politics and Ideas in the Making of the Constitution (1996) which questioned whether originalism is a comprehensive and exhaustive means of interpreting the Constitution. He is also the author of The Beginnings of National Politics: An Interpretive History of the Continental Congress (Alfred Knopf, 1979), James Madison and the Creation of the American Republic (revised edition, Addison, Wesley, Longman, 2001), and Declaring Rights: A Brief History with Documents (Bedford Books, 1997). His latest book, Revolutionaries: A New History of the Invention of America (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt), was published in May 2010, and was a finalist for the George Washington Book Prize..On May 4, 2010, he discussed his book Revolutionaries: A New History of the Invention of America at the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. To listen to the discussion, click the link below.[1]


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