Akhil Reed Amar
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Akhil Reed Amar

Akhil Reed Amar (born September 6, 1958) is an American legal scholar known for his expertise in constitutional law and criminal procedure. He holds the position of Sterling Professor of Law and Political Science at Yale University.[1] A Legal Affairs poll placed Amar among the top 20 contemporary US legal thinkers.[2]

Life and career

Amar was born in Ann Arbor, Michigan, where his parents were medical students from India studying at the University of Michigan. His parents later became U.S. citizens.[3] He graduated from Las Lomas High School in Walnut Creek, California in 1976.[4] His brother, Vikram Amar, is dean of the University of Illinois College of Law.[5]

Amar is a summa cum laude graduate of Yale College (B.A., 1980) and a graduate of the Yale Law School (J.D. 1984), where he was an editor of the Yale Law Journal. Amar clerked for future U.S. Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer when he was a judge on the First Circuit Court of Appeals.

Amar is the author of numerous publications and books, most recently The Constitution Today: Timeless Lessons for the Issues of our Era. The Supreme Court has cited his work in over three dozen cases.

Amar was a consultant to the television show The West Wing, on which the character Josh Lyman refers to him in an episode in Season 5.[6] In Season 7, character Toby Ziegler also mentioned Amar when pointing out a typographical error in the Takings Clause of the U.S. Constitution.[7]

Amar has repeatedly served as a Visiting Professor of Law at Pepperdine School of Law and at Columbia Law School and was recently a visiting professor at University of Pennsylvania Law School. He has also lectured for One Day University. He was elected a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2007.[8]

In 2008, U.S. presidential candidate Mike Gravel said that he would name Amar to the Supreme Court if elected President.[9]


  • The Constitution and Criminal Procedure: First Principles (1997) ISBN 0-300-06678-3
  • For the People (with A. Hirsch) (1997) ISBN 0-684-87102-5
  • The Bill of Rights: Creation and Reconstruction (1998) ISBN 0-300-07379-8
  • Processes of Constitutional Decisionmaking (ed. with P. Brest, S. Levinson, and J.M. Balkin), (2000) ISBN 0-7355-5062-X
  • America's Constitution: A Biography (2005) ISBN 1-4000-6262-4
  • America's Unwritten Constitution: The Precedents and Principles We Live By (2012) ISBN 978-0-465-02957-0
  • The Bill of Rights Primer: A Citizen's Guidebook to the American Bill of Rights (with L. Adams) (2013) ISBN 978-1-62087-572-8
  • The Law of the Land: A Grand Tour of Our Constitutional Republic (2015) ISBN 978-0-465-06590-5
  • The Constitution Today: Timeless Lessons for the Issues of Our Era (2016) ISBN 978-0-465-09633-6

See also


  1. ^ Tam, Derek (November 7, 2008). "Amar Earns Sterling Rank". Yale Daily News. Retrieved 2015.
  2. ^ "Who Are the Top 20 Legal Thinkers in America?". Legal Affairs. Retrieved 2008.
  3. ^ "Akhil Reed Amar: "America's Unwritten Constitution"". The Diane Rehm Show. Washington, DC. September 13, 2012. National Public Radio. WAMU. Transcript.
  4. ^ "Obama Names Yale Professor to Key Administration Post". India-West. May 20, 2015. Retrieved 2017.
  5. ^ "Vikram David Amar". University of Illinois College of Law. 2016. Retrieved 2016.
  6. ^ "5.10: The Stormy Present (with Bellamy Young)". The West Wing Weekly. Retrieved .
  7. ^ PropertyProf (2006-05-11). "The West Wing, The Takings Clause and Tom Merrill". Law Professor Blogs Network. Retrieved .
  8. ^ "Book of Members, 1780-2010: Chapter A" (PDF). American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Archived (PDF) from the original on May 10, 2011. Retrieved 2011.
  9. ^ Kaplan, Thomas (February 7, 2008). "Gravel's justice of choice: Amar". Yale Daily News. Archived from the original on October 24, 2008. Retrieved 2017.

External links

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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