A chronological approach to the Constitution in our history. The author of Vietnam There and Here approaches the Constitution with fine research and simplicity of purpose: to tell the story as it happened and keeps happening. Thus we get the background of the Confederation, the drama of ratification, the amendments, and some attention to personalities in three centuries. The Founding Fathers were aware that the Constitution's deliberate sketchiness could lead to encroachments; these have indeed taken place in every century--from the Sedition Act (1798) to more recent internment of Japanese in WW II to current attempts to grapple with pornography. It's all here, but somehow doesn't ignite as well as it might (the strongest chapter is an examination of ""The Ideal and the Reality""). Peter Sgroi's The Living Constitution, with its narrower focus (p. 561, C-91), was more memorable. Useful for school reports, the helpful appendix material includes the Constitution and Amendments, a list of delegates, and a glossary. Index.