"America's Counterrevolution - Unlearned Lessons" is about America's social revolution -which saw this nation change from a state that constitutionally sanctioned human degradation in the form of slavery and segregation, into one that enshrined in its basic charter human rights and guarantees of equality before the law for all persons. The revolution, in what Justice Marshall calls our "system of constitutional government", made our legal system the wonder of the world, which others constantly seek to emulate. In order to understand what is required of Americans as they find themselves in this counterrevolutionary period with respect to civil rights, there must first be an understanding of the nation's racial history and the role that law has played in that history. There are signs that the counterrevolution has been overtaken by positive developments during the past year. If this continues, the "unlearned lessons" may become the "learned lessons." And every American will be the better for it.


The Fifty-Fourth Cleveland-Marshall Fund Lecture