Truman to Celebrate Constitution Day, Sept. 17

In recognition of Constitution Day, Danielle Allen, professor at the Institute for Advanced Study at Princeton, will lecture on “Equality as the Foundation for Liberty: Reading the Declaration and Constitution Together” at 1:30 p.m. Sept. 17 in Baldwin Hall 176.  

The Declaration of Independence and Constitution are often thought to stand in tension with each other—the first promoting the ideal of equality, the second that of liberty. Allen will explore how the argument imbedded in the Declaration anticipates the Constitution in several ways and thereby draws equality and freedom into a close relationship with one another.

Allen’s book “Our Declaration” was published this summer and has received good reviews in the New York Times, Washington Post, New York Review of Books and other newspapers and periodicals. She is also the author of “The World of Prometheus: The Politics of Punishing in Democratic Athens,” “Talking to Strangers: Anxieties of Citizenship since Brown v. Board of Education” and “Why Plato Wrote.” In 2002, she received a MacArthur Fellowship. She was also in the news this summer because her work on the Declaration convinced her that an error in punctuation has become part of the “standard” version—an error that alters the meaning of a substantive element—and she has been pressing the National Archives to revisit their official transcription of the document.