Glass and Gavel: The U.S. Supreme Court and Alcohol – June 19, 2019

A Law Library of Louisiana Free CLE
Co-sponsored by the Supreme Court of Louisiana Historical Society
Glass and Gavel:
The U.S. Supreme Court and Alcohol

Glass and Gavel book cover

Presented by Dr. Nancy L. Maveety
Wednesday, June 19, 2019
11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
Courtroom, Louisiana Supreme Court
400 Royal Street, New Orleans

One Hour CLE

On Wednesday, June 19th, the Law Library of Louisiana and the Supreme Court of Louisiana Historical Society co-sponsored a free CLE program, Glass and Gavel: The U.S. Supreme Court and Alcohol, at the Louisiana Supreme Court. This program seeks to increase the understanding of how much of U.S. constitutional law – U.S. Supreme Court rulings on the powers of government and the rights of individuals – has been shaped by America’s unsettled relationship with alcohol and the establishments that serve it. Combining an examination of U.S. Supreme Court justices’ participation in the social use of alcohol across the Court’s history with a survey of the Court’s decisions on alcohol regulation, Professor Maveety illustrated the ways in which the Court has helped to construct the changing culture of alcohol. “Intoxicating liquor” is one of the few things so plainly material to explicitly merit mention, not once, but twice, in the amendments to the U.S. Constitution. From the tavern as a judicial meeting space, to the bootlegger as both pariah and patriot, to the individual freedom issue of the sobriety checkpoint—there is the Supreme Court, adjudicating but also partaking in the temper of the times. In an entertaining and accessible style, she shows that what the justices say and do with respect to alcohol provides important lessons about their times, our times, and our “constitutional cocktail” of limited governmental power and individual rights.


Nancy L. Maveety is Professor and Chair of the Department of Political Science, Tulane University. She received a Masters and Ph.D. in Political Science at John Hopkins University in Baltimore. Dr. Maveety has published numerous books including: Picking Judges; Queen’s Court: Judicial Power in the Rehnquist Era; Justice Sandra Day O’Connor: Strategist on the Supreme Court; and Representation Rights and the Burger Years. Maveety is a prolific writer and her current book manuscript-in-progress is Neo-Restraint and the New Judicial Order.