Samuel LaSelva (D.Phil., Oxford) works on political theory, legal philosophy, and constitutional thought and his publications fall within these areas. His research includes The Moral Foundations of Canadian Federalism as well as essays on J.S. Mill in Political Studies and on the Charter of Rights in the Canadian Journal of Political Science. He is currently at work primarily on the ethics of constitutionalism which includes such topics as hate speech, sexist pornography, secession, multiculturalism, and Aboriginal self-government. He has supervised graduate theses in all areas of his teaching and research.

Winter 2020

POLI309 Canadian Perspectives on Human Rights Sections

Key issues in the theory and practice of human rights in Canada. Topics will vary from year to year.

Winter 2020

POLI347A Law and Political Theory - LAW & POLI THRY Sections

An examination of law and political theory that considers topics such as sovereignty, constitutionalism, civil disobedience, rights and the political role of judges.

Winter 2020

POLI402A Law and Politics of the Canadian Constitution - CANADIAN CONSTIT Sections

Seminar on the origins and development of the Canadian Constitution: the political aspects of federalism and the legal consequences of the Charter of Rights.

Winter 2020

POLI440B Contemporary Political Theory - CONT POLI THEORY Sections

This seminar examines the political ideas of leading political philosophers of the twentieth century. Consult the departmental website.

Samuel LaSelva, Canada and the Ethics of Constitutionalism: Identity, Destiny, and Constitutional Faith   (McGill-Queen’s University Press; in press, December 2018)

Samuel LaSelva, “Toleration Without Hate Speech: The Keegstra Decision, American Free Speech Exceptionalism, and Locke’s Letter,” Canadian Journal of Political Science  48:3 (2015): 699-718.

Samuel LaSelva, “The Canadian Charter, the British Connection, and the Americanization Thesis: Toward a Montesquieuean Analysis of Rights and Their Protection,”  Canadian Journal of Political Science  50:4 (2017): 1061-1081.

“‘I Know It When I See It’: Pornography and Constitutional Vision in Canada and the United States,” in S. Newman, ed., Constitutional Politics in Canada and the United States, SUNY, in press.

“Mosaic and Melting-Pot: The Dialectic of Pluralism and Constitutional Faith in Canada and the United States,” in H. Telford and H. Lazar, eds., Canadian Political Culture(s) in Transition, McGill Queen’s University Press, 2002.“Federalism, Pluralism and Constitutional Faith,” Review of Constitutional Studies, 2002.

“Liberalism, Feminism, and Pornography: Regina v. Butler” (with R. Vernon), in H. Mellon and M. Westmacott, eds., Political Dispute and Judicial Review, Nelson, 2000.“Pluralism and Hate: Freedom, Censorship, and the Canadian Identity,” in K. Petersen and A. Hutchinson, eds., Interpreting Censorship in Canada, University of Toronto Press, 1999.

“Divided Houses: Secession and Constitutional Faith in Canada and the United States,” Vermont Law Review, 1999.

“Aboriginal Self-Government and the Foundations of Canadian Nationhood,” B.C. Studies, Winter 1998/99.