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Anti-Federalist Papers: Summary & Analysis

Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, and John Jay

❶The last argument Madison makes in favor of a large republic is that as, in a small republic, there will be a lower variety of interests and parties, a majority will more frequently be found. The eight chapters in this section laid down the historical groundwork for the arguments on specific constitutional points and political theories to be discussed in detail later.

Birth of the Constitution

Brief Overview
The Federalist Papers
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These are a series of eighty-five letters written to newspapers in by Alexander Hamilton , James Madison , and John Jay , urging ratification of the Constitution. After a new Constitution, intended to replace the ineffectual Articles of Confederation , had been hammered out at the Philadelphia Convention, it was agreed that it would go into effect when nine of the thirteen states had approved it in ratifying conventions. All strong nationalists, the essayists argued that, most important, the proposed system would preserve the Union, now in danger of breaking apart, and empower the federal government to act firmly and coherently in the national interest.

Conflicting economic and political interests would be reconciled through a representative Congress, whose legislation would be subject to presidential veto and judicial review. Nevertheless, the essays, published in book form as The Federalist in , have through the years been widely read and respected for their masterly analysis and interpretation of the Constitution and the principles upon which the government of the United States was established.

Eric Foner and John A. We strive for accuracy and fairness. But if you see something that doesn't look right, contact us! Subscribe for fascinating stories connecting the past to the present. Known for their support of a strong national government, the Federalists emphasized commercial and diplomatic harmony with The Alien and Sedition Acts were a series of four laws passed by the U.

Congress in amid widespread fear that war with France was imminent. The four laws — which remain controversial to this day — restricted the activities of foreign residents in the country and limited The rebels were mostly ex-Revolutionary War soldiers turned farmers who opposed state The Articles of Confederation was the first written constitution of the United States. Stemming from wartime urgency, its progress was slowed by fears of central authority and extensive land claims by states before was it was ratified on March 1, The confederacy failed to effectively provide for the common defense because the responsibility fell upon the central government, while the power rested with the states.

The central government must be able to maintain standing armies, provide for a national militia, and be able to levy direct taxes to support its common defense and provide for national prosperity. Fears about the central government becoming too powerful and abusing its military authority or right to tax should be soothed by understanding the role of legislature, or the representatives of the people, in determining the central government's authority to raise an army and levy taxes.

Allowing both the federal and state government to levy taxes will ensure that they both have enough funds to effectively plan to meet their different needs. Critics claim that the Constitutional Convention was not authorized to remove the Articles of Confederation.

In fact, resolutions of both the Annapolis Convention and the Confederation Congress allowed for any changes consistent with the needs of the nation. It contains many of the same powers, only strengthened, and differs only in the number of states required to ratify the changes, requiring only 9 instead of the formerly required Furthermore, the Constitution requires that the people, not the states, are needed to ratify the document and decide whether they will take the advice of the framers or not.

The framers did the best within their abilities to provide a plan that would best ensure the happiness of the American people. Even if the convention was unauthorized, that does not mean that the states should not take the good advice of the delegates to the convention.

Each of the powers delegated to congress under the U. Constitution originate with the people themselves, are checked by the authority of other branches of government, or can be checked by the state governments. The powers delegated to the central government will best maintain the individual liberty of the citizens by providing for unified and enforced regulations and guidelines.

Plus, the state governments retain a large portion of their sovereignty under the new form of government, which is dependent on the state governments for its elections and its membership in the Senate. The state governments will always collectively overpower the central government due to the sheer number of state officials, and to the close connection of the people to their local governments.

The state and federal governments are not competing for power, but designed to effectively work together in protecting the common good. The state governments are responsible for internal affairs, and the federal for external affairs. They have the mutual authority to check the power of the other, through the power of the people.

This will especially protect the state governments from usurpations of power by the federal government. The division of the federal government into three distinct branches, each with the authority to effectively check the power of the others will also ensure the best protection of individual liberty.

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The Federalist Papers study guide contains a biography of Alexander Hamilton, John Jay and James Madison, literature essays, a complete e-text, quiz questions, major themes, characters, and a full summary and analysis.

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A short summary of The Founding Fathers's The Federalist Papers (). This free synopsis covers all the crucial plot points of The Federalist Papers ().

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The Federalist Papers consist of eighty-five letters written to newspapers in the late s to urge ratification of the U.S. Constitution. With the Constitution needing approval from nine of thirteen states, the press was inundated with letters about the controversial document. Read the Federalist Papers The best way to determine the intent of the founders when drafting the US Constitution is to read them for yourself. Then you can be the judge of whether or not the federal government is abusing the power afforded it by the US Constitution.

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The Federalist Papers were a collection of essays in support of the Constitution of the United States. They were written by James Madison, Alexander Hamilton and John Jay in order to persuade New York State to ratify the Constitution. The Federalists supported the new constitution, and encouraged the people to ratify it through a collection of 85 coordinated essays known as the Federalist Papers. The Anti-Federalists opposed the new constitution, and argued that it needed to be fixed before being ratified.