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Madison Vision Series event to examine rewriting of Virginia Constitution

MVS rewriting Virginia Constitution

SUMMARY: The final Madison Vision Series event of the 2020-21 school year will examine the 50th anniversary of the 1971 rewriting of the Virginia Constitution. Join us April 8 at 7 p.m. as legal scholars discuss these important revisions and their impact on the commonwealth.

The 1971 rewriting of the Virginia Constitution reversed a century-old practice of disenfranchising Black voters.

This progressive rewriting on the heels of the civil rights movement omitted the poll tax and other barriers to voting in Virginia, as well as the requirement of racial segregation in public schools. It also prohibited governmental discrimination based on “religious conviction, race, color, sex, or national origin” and in effect granted to every school-age person in the commonwealth a right to a high-quality education in a public school.

On April 8 at 7 p.m., James Madison University and Norfolk State University will host “Looking Back, Looking Forward: The 50th Anniversary of the 1971 Rewriting of the Virginia Constitution,” a virtual Madison Vision Series event.

Join us as A. E. Dick Howard, the Warner-Booker Distinguished Professor of International Law at the University of Virginia, and retired Virginia Supreme Court Justice Elizabeth A. McClanahan examine the 1971 revisions to the Virginia Constitution and their impact on the commonwealth.

The program will include a question-and-answer session with NSU President Javaune Adams-Gaston and JMU President Jonathan R. Alger, as well as a student-led Q&A with members of the audience. Questions may be submitted the night of the event via chat or in advance by clicking here.

McClanahan will facilitate the discussion.

The event will be livestreamed on Facebook and YouTube.

“Looking Back, Looking Forward: The 50th Anniversary of the 1971 Rewriting of the Virginia Constitution” is presented by the Madison Vision Series: Contemporary Issues in an Engaged Society, which honors James Madison’s conviction that cultivating an informed and educated citizenry is essential to the health of our republican democracy. The series brings scholars, thinkers and leaders of all kinds to campus for lively explorations of issues facing our society.  



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Published: Wednesday, March 31, 2021

Last Updated: Tuesday, April 6, 2021

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