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PROFESSOR OF THE SCIENCE AND THE ART OF TEACHING IN THE UNIVERSITY OF MICHI-
GAN; AUTHOR OF "THE OLD NORTHWEST," SCHOOLS AND STUDIES,”

“HOW TO TEACH AND STUDY HISTORY,” AND EDITOR OF

THE “ WORKS OF JAMES ABRAM GARFIELD"

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COPYRIGHT, 1891, BY THE REGISTER PUBLISHING COMPANY, ANN ARBOR, MICH.

COPYRIGHT, 1895, BY B. A. HINSDALE

Am. Govt.

PREFACE TO THE FIRST EDITION.

THE Study of Political Science has received a great impulse in the United States since the Civil War. In the schools, the charge is particularly marked. This is owing to the direct influence of the War, to the increasing number and difficulty of political problems attending the development of society, and to the growth of interest in human questions all over the civilized world.

The change in the character of the work done in schools is almost as marked as the change in its quantity. A generation ago, such work was practically limited to the study of the Constitution of the United States, carried on in a very narrow way. The sole text-book was the traditionary “Civil Government” that still lingers in some schools. This the introduction of the historical and scientific methods of investigation and teaching has changed for the better. The field of study has continued to widen until, in the best schools, it can no longer be covered even by the ablest students, and it has become a serious matter to know what portion of it to cultivate.

As the result of much experience both as a student and a teacher of the subject, the author is of the opinion that, not only in the High School and the Academy, but also in the College, the American Government should still be the central subject of study in this field. This opinion he holds on both practical and pedagogical grounds. He is further of the opinion, that this study should embrace a comprehensive view of the origin and growth of the American Government, and an adequate historical and exegetical commentary upon our dual Constitution, National and State. He has accordingly attempted to furnish a text-book embodying these ideas.

The university student may profitably study books devoted to the principles of Constitutional Law; but such a treatise is not the textbook that the average college student, with his power of generalization and compass of facts, needs. He will find a careful study of the Constitution of the United States, accompanied by suitable historical discussion and illustration, far more profitable than constitutional

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