Inaugural Lecture for Prof. Aileen Kavanagh

Date: 14 February 2023
Time: 18:00 - 19:00

Beginning with the words We, the People, the American Constitution 1789 conjured a dream of a democratic constitution rooted in the power of the people.  Looking at this American dream through Irish eyes, Aileen Kavanagh will argue that the Irish Constitution of 1937 Bunreacht na hireann - realizes the ideal of a peoples constitution to a far greater extent than its American counterpart.  It does so by allowing the people to amend their constitution by referendum.  Using the marriage equality referendum in 2015 as a pivotal example of popular constitutionalism, this Lecture will explore the role of conversation and compassion, empathy and engagement, criticism and controversy, in creating a living constitution which people can see as theirs. Professor Aileen Kavanagh is Professor of Constitutional Governance at Trinity College Dublin and Director of TriCON, the Trinity Centre for Constitutional Governance.  Formerly Professor of Constitutional Law at the University of Oxford, Aileen Kavanagh has written widely in the fields of constitutional theory, human rights, and comparative constitutional law.  She is author of The Collaborative Constitution, which will be published by Cambridge University Press in June 2023.

Campus Location

Arts Building and Edmund Burke Theatre


One-time event

Type of Event

Lectures and Seminars


Retired Staff,Undergrad,Postgrad,Faculty & Staff,Public

Contact Name

Valerie Smith

Contact Email


Edmund Burke Theatre



Contact phone


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