David Hudson, ’94, authors “Supreme Court Answer Book”

Oct 25, 2007

Which Supreme Court justice killed a man in a duel? Who was the first Supreme Court Justice to attend law school? Which justices signed the Declaration of Independence?

David L Hudson Jr., ’94, who is currently a First Amendment Scholar at the First Amendment Center at Vanderbilt University, answers these questions and many more in his newly released book, The Handy Supreme Court Answer Book.

Hudson is an attorney/author whose previous books – aimed at a lay audience – have addressed such topics as the Bill of Rights, the 14th Amendment, student rights and free speech in American schools. In The Handy Supreme Court Answer Guide, he offers a comprehensive overview that covers the origins of the court as well as the way the federal judiciary system works, the Supreme Court’s session schedule, how cases reach the court, and the argument, decision and appeal process.

Hudson’s book covers the time periods from the first Chief Justice John Jay through the 17th Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr., offering the context of the social, cultural and political atmosphere in which justices served on court. In addition to trivia such as who were the tallest and shortest Supreme Court Justices, the book covers important decisions like Brown v. Board of Education (1954) and Miranda v. Arizona (1966).

Hudson, who writes regularly on the Supreme Court as a contributing editor to the American Bar Association’s Preview of U.S. Supreme Court Cases and teaches on the adjunct faculty of Vanderbilt Law School and at the Nashville School of Law, is the author of more than 15 books, including The Rehnquist Court: Understanding Its Impact and Legacy (Praeger, 2006). He earned his undergraduate degree at Duke University before earning his J.D. at Vanderbilt Law School. He will teach a First Amendment class at Vanderbilt Law School in Spring 2008.

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