Hamilton and the Federalist Papers: Still Relevant?
Prof. Gerald M. Pomper, CC’55, Princeton Ph.D.’59
Prof. Pomper, a political scientist and popular lecturer will analyze the relevance, in today’s political climate, of the Federalist Papers, 85 essays written by Alexander Hamilton, James Madison and John Jay, 230 years ago to urge the ratification of the Constitution.
7pm: Family-Style Dinner
The Federalist Papers are widely considered the most authoritative source of the original intent of the framers and one of the most significant American contributions to the field of political philosophy and theory. Prof. Pomper will help us to understand and apply the philosophy, maneuvering, political science and moral and political lessons that may be drawn from the Constitutional Convention, the Federalist Papers that explained it and the extent to which they bear on the premises we operate under and decisions we confront today.
Gerald M. Pomper is a specialist in American elections and politics and the author or editor of 21 books, including Passions and Interests, Elections in America, Voters’ Choice, and Negative Campaigning. In 2001, he published “The Election of 2000,” the seventh and last volume in a 24-year series on U.S. national elections. His broadest work is On Ordinary Heroes and American Democracy. The book examines eight individuals, each representing a major institution of American government and politics, who made major contributions to the nation. When published in 2004 by Yale University Press, the book was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize. A paperback edition followed in 2007, including a new introduction on heroes of the 21st century.
At Columbia, Prof. Pomper majored in political science, served as Managing Editor of Spectator, and graduated Phi Beta Kappa. He has been a Fulbright or visiting professor at Tel-Aviv University, Oxford, and Australian National University, and held the first Tip O'Neill Chair in Public Life at Northeastern University. At Rutgers for over fifty years, he was chairman of the University and Livingston College political science department and chaired a select committee that proposed major changes, since adopted, in undergraduate education. The American Political Science Association has honored him for career achievement. He has served as an expert witness on campaign finance, reapportionment, and political party regulation.
His civic activities include eight years on his local board of education, including two years as president, membership on his local zoning board and the borough's Redevelopment Authority, summer institutes for high school teachers, evaluations for New Jersey's former department of higher education, and service as chair of the Free Speech committee of the American Civil Liberties Union. He is a Board member and past President of the Middlesex County chapter of CASA of New Jersey, a child advocacy organization.