Degree Type

Honors Capstone Project

Date of Submission

Spring 5-1-2005

Capstone Advisor

Keith Bybee

Honors Reader

Michael Barkun

Capstone Major

Political Science

Capstone College

Citizenship and Public Affairs

Audio/Visual Component


Capstone Prize Winner


Won Capstone Funding


Honors Categories

Social Sciences

Subject Categories

American Politics | Other Political Science | Political Science


This thesis is meant to accomplish the task of comparing and contrasting the different aspects of the Patriot Act and the Alien and Sedition Acts in the hope that, in the process, something can be learned about the future of the Patriot Act.

The first chapter of the thesis consists of an analysis of the controversial sections of the Patriot Act. Moreover, the debate over the Act is introduced and dissected. The last section of the chapter discusses the importance of studying similar national security legislation in American history – such as the Alien and Sedition Acts – in order to overcome some of the secrecy surrounding the Patriot Act that prevents us from fully understanding what effect the Act has had and will continue to have on Americans.

Chapter 2 begins by introducing the topic of the Alien and Sedition Acts. The sections of the Acts are then analyzed and discussed in detail. Then, in the most substantial and important section of the thesis, the Alien and Sedition Acts are compared to the Patriot Act in the following context: sociopolitical context; debate; and application.

The third and final chapter of the thesis attempts to tie together all of the information presented in the first two chapters and make a statement about where the Patriot Act may be headed based on the fate of the Alien and Sedition Acts.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.



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