Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone
  • Android

To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.

  • List Price: $29.95
  • Save: $3.15 (11%)
Only 1 left in stock (more on the way).
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
Patriots and Cosmopolitan... has been added to your Cart
FREE Shipping on orders over $25.
Condition: Used: Good
Comment: Book is in good condition. May contain highlighting/underlining. Supplemental materials may not be valid. Ships fast from Amazon!
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 2 images

Patriots and Cosmopolitans: Hidden Histories of American Law Hardcover – March 30, 2007

See all 4 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
New from Used from
"Please retry"
"Please retry"
$21.00 $2.36

Best Books of the Year So Far
Looking for something great to read? Browse our editors' picks for the Best Books of the Year So Far in fiction, nonfiction, mysteries, children's books, and much more.
$26.80 FREE Shipping. Only 1 left in stock (more on the way). Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
click to open popover

Frequently Bought Together

  • Patriots and Cosmopolitans: Hidden Histories of American Law
  • +
  • Brown v. Board of Education and the Civil Rights Movement
Total price: $44.97
Buy the selected items together

Editorial Reviews


Extremely stimulating, consistently interesting. (Christopher Tomlins, American Bar Foundation)

Impressive and ingenious, a model of scholarship in legal history. (Mark Tushnet, Harvard Law School)

An elegantly written, broad-ranging and imaginative take on American nationalism from one of the best of the new generation of legal historians. (Mary Dudziak, University of Southern California School of Law)

A must-read about fascinating individuals whose lives should be better known, since they vividly illuminate the history of American civil liberties and law. (Nadine Strossen, President, American Civil Liberties Union)

Brimming with fresh insights, a rare marriage of style and substance. (William Forbath, University of Texas School of Law)

Legal historians have long debated the relationship between America's origins as a constitutional state founded upon a legal text and its history as a nation-state animated by a pluralism of cultures and traditions. In this elegant and arresting new book, Professor John Witt describes how this interaction explains the "bounded contingency" of American legal development, which emphasizes the "the many possible paths open to legal and constitutional development" and "the many possible national identities open to self-described Americans" that are bounded by "American nationhood." Professor Witt's project charts a new course in American legal historiography by focusing on the ways in which America channeled and transformed global influences during critical periods in the nation's history. (Harvard Law Review)

There is no more central legal issue in debate these days than whether we are unique among the nations of the world for our structure of laws and liberties or whether we change them as convenient fashion dictates. This collection of four answers by...John Fabian Witt illuminates that question as well as provokes those of us who think we already have the answer...It does not give away the book’s focus to reveal that Witt does believe the American nationhood is rooted both in fundamental concepts of law and in the changing interpretation of those laws by an increasingly activist network of courts and, most provocatively, by a self-interested scrum of lawyers. Other nations are governed by laws, to be sure, Witt concedes. Yet he argues America is different. (James Srodes Washington Lawyer 2007-07-01)

In the study of U.S. history, legal history is often neglected. No doubt, the complex nature of the subject is one explanation. Witt, a professor of law and history at Columbia University, cracks this barrier...This informative, readable book brings forth a new perspective. (J. J. Fox Jr. Choice 2008-01-01)

There are some books that simply take your breath away for their daring. Patriots and Cosmopolitans is one of these. In this work the author covers the entire sweep of legal and constitutional history, from the founding generation to the late twentieth century. He tackles private law, lawyering, politics, reform, and legal theory; as well as war, peace, race, gender, and ideas of nationalism...Witt tells his stories well...His argument itself is proof that well-written and forcefully argued legal history can still elevate, inspire, and improve our thinking. (Peter Charles Hoffer The Historian 2008-06-01)

About the Author

John Fabian Witt is Professor of Law and History, Columbia University.

The latest book club pick from Oprah
"The Underground Railroad" by Colson Whitehead is a magnificent novel chronicling a young slave's adventures as she makes a desperate bid for freedom in the antebellum South. See more

Product Details

Customer Reviews

There are no customer reviews yet.
5 star
4 star
3 star
2 star
1 star
Share your thoughts with other customers

Set up an Amazon Giveaway

Patriots and Cosmopolitans: Hidden Histories of American Law
Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers. Learn more about Amazon Giveaway
This item: Patriots and Cosmopolitans: Hidden Histories of American Law

Pages with Related Products. See and discover other items: biography books