Why It Matters: Connecticut’s Civic Reconstruction

How do Connecticut’s citizens balance change and continuity to reconstruct robust civic engagement in an age of unique challenges to our very democracy?

Connecticut has a centuries-long civic tradition that has inspired and informed the rights of individuals and the electoral process.

The Fundamental Orders of 1639, the Connecticut Compromise of 1787, the Constitution of 1818, and the Connecticut Constitutional Convention of 1965 represent both electoral milestones in the state’s history and key elements of the governing foundation of the United States. While on the vanguard of representative government for nearly four hundred years, Connecticut is also slow to change. Known as the “Land of Steady Habits,” the state enters the 21st century as a racially and ethnically diverse, economically bifurcated, and fiscally challenged state.

Connecticut Humanities Thanks

CT Public, HartBeat Ensemble, Democracy and Dialogues, Connecticut Democracy Center, and Everyday Democracy for partnering with us on this important project.

The programs below are generously funded by the “Why it Matters: Civic and Electoral Participation” initiative, administered by the Federation of State Humanities Councils, and funded by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

About the Initiative

We endeavor with our partners to provide frameworks for meaningful discussion around often difficult and divisive topics, instruction on civic processes and participation, and avenues that ensure access for all citizens to value and participate fully in our democracy.

We aim to:

  • further public knowledge and awareness of Connecticut’s crucial role in the creation of American democracy,
  • explore the importance of civic engagement and how it affects us personally and collectively, and
  • raise awareness that voting does not equate to civic engagement but rather is one critical expression of it.

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