In Search of the Constitution (1987)

In American history, no document has sparked as much reverence, discussion, and controversy as the Constitution. But how does it really affect our everyday lives? How do ordinary citizens, legal scholars, and Supreme Court justices interpret it? Join Bill Moyers for his 11 part series, originally produced to mark the Constitution’s bicentennial, that delves into the fascinating history and contemporary relevance of the ultimate law of the land. In-depth interviews with a wide range of experts – including four Supreme Court justices, educator Mortimer Adler, legal philosopher Ronald Dworkin, and Judge Robert Bork – provide not only rich historical detail but also illuminating insights on current disputes. Throughout, In Search of the Constitution shows how this brief text has shaped our nation and holds the power to change our lives.  The series includes the following episodes: In the Beginning, Justice Harry A. Blackmun, Mortimer Adler, Justice Brennan, Ronald Dworkin, God and the Constitution, Strictly Speaking, Justice Sandra Day O’Connor, For the People, 1987 v. the Constitution and Justice Lewis F. Powell.

EXPLORE In Search of the Constitution (1987)

  • July 21, 2014 | History
    The first woman on the Supreme Court cast the deciding vote in reaffirming Roe v. Wade in 1992, but things could have turned out differently.
  • January 25, 2013 | History
    Blackmun, who wrote the majority opinion in the landmark abortion rights case, called it a necessary step "towards the emancipation of women."
  • June 11, 1987 | History
    When ordinary citizens defend their constitutional rights.
  • April 30, 1987 | In Search of the Constitution (1987)
    Bill Moyers talks with Mortimer Adler about engaging in a Socratic dialogue with students about the Constitution.
  • April 23, 1987 | In Search of the Constitution (1987)
    Bill Moyers looks closely at the summer of 1787 and the 55 men who came together to write the Constitution
  • April 16, 1987 | In Search of the Constitution (1987)
    Bill Moyers has a detailed discussion with Supreme Court Justice Harry Blackmun about his career and decisions.