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Erin Rahne Kidwell


Curator of Legal History Collections, Special Collections Department, Georgetown Law Library, Adjunct Professor of Law

B.A., Ohio State; J.D., Capital University; LL.M., S.J.D., Georgetown

B.F.A., Ohio State; J.D., Capital University; LL.M., S.J.D., Georgetown. Professor Kidwell is the Curator of Legal History in the Special Collections Department of Georgetown Law...

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B.F.A., Ohio State; J.D., Capital University; LL.M., S.J.D., Georgetown. Professor Kidwell is the Curator of Legal History in the Special Collections Department of Georgetown Law Library, where she has assisted numerous legal scholars, students, and practitioners in researching a variety of subjects in legal history. As an Adjunct Professor at Georgetown Law, she offers two legal history courses – British Legal History: from the Celts to the Industrial Age, 1-1890 CE, and Early American Legal History: From Settlement to Reconstruction 1600-1880. She is also a regular participant in seminars relating to the History of British Political Thought at The Folger Institute; she is currently curating the Folger Library’s upcoming Fall 2015 exhibit on the impact and influence of law on society in Shakespearean England. Her publications include – The Paths of the Law: Historical Consciousness, Creative Democracy, and Judicial Review, 62 Alb. L. Rev. 91 (1998); England, Early Modern, Entry in Encyclopedia of Religious Freedom (Routledge 2003); and, 60 Renaissance Q. 1005-1008 (2007) (reviewing Ken MacMillan, Sovereignty and Possession in the English New World: The Legal Foundations of Empire 1576-1640 (2006)). Her current projects include an edited facsimile reprint – George Saltern, Of the Antient Lawes of Great Brittaine (1605) (Erin Rahne Kidwell ed., Lawbook Exchange forthcoming 2015), the introductory chapters of which explore the interplay between history, myth and law in early 17th century British juridical works; a book based on her doctoral dissertation, Arthur and the Ancient Constitution – The Once and Future Constitution: Ancient Constitutionalism in British-American Myth, History and Law; a comparative legal history textbook– The Sovereignty of Law: Materials in British-American Juridical History, that covers Scotland, Wales, Ireland, the British Empire and Commonwealth nations in addition to the traditional coverage of only English and American history; and, a book exploring the equitable origins of American constitutionalism – The Executory Constitution: The Equitable Origins and Nature of American Constitutionalism.

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