An Unfinished Revolution: Reapportionment and the Quest for Democracy in Twentieth-Century America


ACLS Fellowship Program


History and American Studies


When asked the most important issue decided by his Court, Chief Justice Earl Warren cited Baker v. Carr (1962), Reynolds v. Sims (1964), and a series of companion cases that established the principle of "one-person, one-vote" in all congressional and state legislative apportionments. These decisions ushered in a revolution that changed the face of representative democracy in the United States. Despite the importance of these cases, not one full-length monograph has appeared in print in nearly thirty-five years. During that time, numerous relevant sources have become available, including the papers of Supreme Court justices; lawyers involved in the cases; and organizations such as the League of Women Voters which actively fought efforts to overturn the rulings.