'Scalia Speaks' Editor Describes His Boss’s Spoken Word Legacy


Take a Letter, Scalia

A new compilation of Justice Antonin Scalia’s speeches underscores that the justice left behind much more than his written work.

Much has been made of the late Justice Antonin Scalia’s legacy of opinions and dissents written during three decades at the Supreme Court.

A new book, “Scalia Speaks: Reflections on Law, Faith, and Life Well Lived” underscores that the justice left behind much more than his written work.

The compilation contains “nearly 50 speeches, very few of which have ever been published anywhere before,” co-editor and former Scalia clerk Ed Whelan tells Bloomberg BNA in this podcast.

The easy-to-digest speeches cover everything from Scalia’s athletic experiences as a youth to turkey hunting to his friendship with Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

“It’s very much intended for a general audience,” Whelan said.The speeches also offer a quick overview of Scalia’s judicial philosophy.

They could therefore become the starting point for future legal scholars wanting to understand the textualist’s mind before tackling his written legacy.

Check out the podcast to find out:

  • How Scalia’s son Christopher (the 8th of the justice’s 9 children!) and Whelan compiled the speeches
  • What Ginsburg hopes the book will accomplish
  • What Scalia might have to say about the controversy over Amy Coney Barrett’s confirmation hearing and questions about her Catholic faith
  • Whether Scalia thinks great intelligence is necessary for great legal writing

Stay up to date with all the latest Supreme Court news with a free trial to United States Law Week.