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THE GREAT DISSENTER: The Story of John Marshall Harlan with Peter S. Canellos
Wednesday, June 23, 2021, 2:00 PM
With lively prose, in-depth research, and colorful characters, Peter Canellos has written a new and compelling biography of U.S. Supreme Court Justice John Marshall Harlan whose dissenting opinions during the Gilded Age inspired legal revolutions of the New Deal and Civil Rights eras of the 20th century.
In post-Civil War Supreme Court decisions, Justice Harlan sought to affirm civil rights and economic freedom as his fellow justices were concluding that segregation was lawful. In Justice Harlan’s dissenting opinion in Plessy v. Ferguson, he alone wrote that all citizens should have equal access to civil rights, an opinion later used by Thurgood Marshall as his legal roadmap to overturning segregation.
The author also reveals the special role played by slave Robert Harlan, whose post-Civil War political leadership influenced the Kentucky lawyer’s ascent to the Supreme Court.
Peter S. Canellos is an award-winning writer and former Editorial Page Editor of The Boston Globe and Executive Editor of Politico. He is the editor of the New York Times bestseller, Last Lion: The Fall and Rise of Ted Kennedy.
Please register in advance to ensure you receive the zoom link. All are welcome to attend.