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Constitutional politics has returned in our time in a truly dramatic way. In the last 25 years, not only in the new or restored democracies of South and East Europe, Latin America and Africa, but also in the established liberal or not so liberal democracies of Germany, Italy, Japan,
Israel, New Zealand, Canada and Great Britain, issues of constitution-making, constitutional revision and institutional design or redesign have been put on the political agenda. Even in the United States, given the new or renewed problems of our versions of presidentialism, federalism and
electoral regime, Article V has come to be experienced as a veritable prison house, and judicial constitution-making (think of Buckley v Valejo) is often seen as much as a threat to, as the protection of, democratic mechanisms. And, most recently, in countries currently experiencing externally
imposed revolutions, namely Afghanistan and Iraq, constitution-making has turned out to be a central stake in the ongoing political process. We are living in an epoch in which the nations seem to be slouching, or being prodded, toward Philadelphia and Americans, as the heirs of Madison and
MacArthur, are sorely tempted to try teaching others the secrets of its success as a supposedly continuous 200-year-old constitutional democracy. But to be an effective teacher, it is not enough to be in a position of political-military superiority. One must first relearn to learn and even
Theoria is an engaged, multidisciplinary and peer-reviewed journal of social and political theory. Its purpose is to address, through scholarly debate, the many challenges posed to intellectual life by the major social, political and economic forces that shape the contemporary world. Thus it is principally concerned with questions such as how modern systems of power, processes of globalization and capitalist economic organization bear on matters such as justice, democracy and truth.