Constitutional Conservatism: Liberty, Self-Government, and Political Moderation
Pub Date: February 04, 2013
Product Format: Cloth
Availability: In stock.
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Social conservatives and libertarians: Is a meeting of the minds possible?
Feuding among US conservatives for the title of True Conservative is nothing new. Underlying the feud has been a failure to grasp that conservatism in America forms a family of principles that require accommodation: to each other, to the exigencies of the moment, and to the changing habits and opinions of the American people. In Constitutional Conservatism, Peter Berkowitz identifies the political principles social conservatives and libertarians share, or should share, and sketches the common ground on which they can and should join forces.
Drawing on the writings of Edmund Burke, The Federalist, and the high points of post-World War II American conservatism, Berkowitz argues that the top political priority for social conservatives and libertarians should be to rally around the principles of liberty crystallized in the US Constitution and pursue reform in light of them. He shows that this task depends on the cultivation of the virtue of political moderation, which at its peak consists in the balancing of rival but worthy principles. He concludes that constitutional conservatism, well understood, provides a sturdy framework for developing a distinctive political agenda to which both social conservatives and libertarian conservatives can in good conscience subscribe.
Peter Berkowitz is the Tad and Dianne Taube Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University, where he cochairs the Jill and Boyd Smith Task Force on Virtues of a Free Society and chairs the Koret-Taube Task Force on National Security and Law.
He studies and writes about, among other things, constitutional government, conservatism and progressivism, liberal education, national security and law, and Middle East politics.
He is the author of Israel and the Struggle over the International Laws of War (Hoover Institution Press, 2012), Virtue and the Making of Modern Liberalism (Princeton University Press, 1999), and Nietzsche: The Ethics of an Immoralist (Harvard University Press, 1995).
He is the editor of The Future of American Intelligence (Hoover Institution Press, 2005); Terrorism, the Laws of War, and the Constitution: Debating the Enemy Combatant Cases (Hoover Institution Press, 2005); the companion volumes Varieties of Conservatism in America (Hoover Institution Press, 2004) and Varieties of Progressivism in America (Hoover Institution Press, 2004); and Never a Matter of Indifference: Sustaining Virtue in a Free Republic (Hoover Institution Press, 2003).
In 2004, with co-editor Tod Lindberg, he launched Hoover Studies in Politics, Economics, and Society, a series of concise books on leading issues and controversies.
He has written hundreds of essays, articles, and reviews on many subjects for a variety of publications, including the American Political Science Review, the Atlantic, the Boston Globe, the Chronicle of Higher Education, Commentary, Haaretz, the Jerusalem Post, the London Review of Books, National Review, The New Republic, the New York Post, the New York Sun, Policy Review, The Public Interest, Real Clear Politics, the Times Literary Supplement, the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, The Weekly Standard, the Wilson Quarterly, and the Yale Law Journal.
He holds a JD and a PhD in political science from Yale University; an MA in philosophy from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem; and a BA in English literature from Swarthmore College.
Real Clear Politics—Feburary 18, 2013
The Washington Post—Feburary 8, 2013
Wall Street Journal—December 14, 2012
National Review—December 10, 2012
Midwest Book Review—March 2013
"Peter Berkowitz makes a match between Edmund Burke and the American founders to give 'political moderation' a good name on our partisan battlefield. A short, effectual book with shining prose, a telling argument, and a lasting message."
"Peter Berkowitz is among America's wisest and best political philosophers. He proves again why in Constitutional Conservatsim. In it he covers a significant amount of intellectual terrain—from Burke and the American Founders through Buckley and Reagan to the here and now—in a manner that is lively, informed, accessible and timely.