Author Information

Geena Bournazian


James Wilson’s theory of constitutional interpretation is based on a multidimensional view of sovereignty, both principled and derived. While the American people serve as the principle sovereign, they delegate authority to the Court (their agents) to uphold the Constitution and educate the American people about the Constitution, its principles, and the duties of the sovereign people. In rendering their decisions, Wilson argues that judges should apply principles of common sense natural law and natural right that informed the sovereign people’s original understanding of the Constitution. By applying Wilson’s multidimensional concept of sovereignty, the role of the judge can be used as a guide to understanding Wilson’s overall theory of constitutional interpretation.

Note on the Author

Geena Bournazian is a senior majoring in Political Science. She developed this paper during the summer of 2013 under the direction of Dr. Jordon Barkalow (Political Science) as part of a two-semester Honors Thesis. Geena will present her research at the 2014 Midwest Political Science Association meeting in Chicago, IL.

Rights Statement

Articles published in The Undergraduate Review are the property of the individual contributors and may not be reprinted, reformatted, repurposed or duplicated, without the contributor’s consent.