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The aggregate of the individuals who comprise a state or a nation.

In a more restricted sense, as generally used in Constitutional Law, the entire body of those citizens of a state or a nation who are invested with political power for political purposes (the qualified voters).

West's Encyclopedia of American Law, edition 2. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


n. the government in a criminal prosecution, as in People v. Capone. Such a case may also be captioned State v. Davis or in federal prosecutions, United States v. Miller.

Copyright © 1981-2005 by Gerald N. Hill and Kathleen T. Hill. All Right reserved.

PEOPLE. A state; as, the people of the state of New York; a nation in its collective and political capacity. 4 T. R. 783. See 6 Pet. S. C. Rep. 467.
     2. The word people occurs in a policy of insurance. The insurer insures against "detainments of all kings, princes and people." He is not by this understood to insure against any promiscuous or lawless rabble which may be guilty of attacking or detaining a ship. 2 Marsh. Ins. 508. Vide Body politic; Nation.

A Law Dictionary, Adapted to the Constitution and Laws of the United States. By John Bouvier. Published 1856.
References in periodicals archive ?
A third notion of peoplehood refers to all inhabitants of a political community.
This may be referred to as political peoplehood defined by territorial limits.
There is a fourth sense of peoplehood which appears not to be tied to the notion of territorial political community.
On the one hand, diasporas' links to homelands appear more cultural than political, somewhat similar to what Arthur Isak Applbaum calls the "anthropological sense of peoplehood." (53) On the other hand, many diasporas often seem to view themselves as part of the people in the political sense, at times encouraged by homeland governments.
This suggests that there is a need for a theory that captures the notion of peoplehood in both its anthropological and normative sense--a theory that is sensitive to the complex relationship not fully captured by the accounts offered by nationalists and universalists.