Civil Society

Burning Bushes, Smoking Mountains, and the Law

By |2019-08-19T22:16:59-05:00August 19th, 2019|Categories: Bradley J. Birzer, Christianity, Civil Society, Education, History, Natural Law, Senior Contributors, Western Odyssey Series|

While much has been made of the “Ten Commandments” in recent history, men for centuries have accepted these commandments as deeply rooted in the order of the universe and of creation—as an overt expression of the Natural Law. They are one of the ways God has continued to maintain His love for His people. [...]

Socrates on Statesmanship: The Actual Intention

By |2019-07-18T13:46:22-05:00August 12th, 2019|Categories: Civil Society, E.B., Eva Brann, Great Books, In Honor of Eva Brann at 90 Series, Liberal Learning, Philosophy, Plato, Politics, Senior Contributors, Socrates, St. John's College|

Statesmanship is the craft of setting up a civic framework, a loom upon which the citizens of various temperaments, here the warp and woof, are interwoven into a cloak-like texture, which represents at once the body politic and its protective cover, as if to say that a well-interlaced citizenry will wrap itself in its own [...]

Cicero’s Republic: The Duty to Make Whole That Which Is Broken

By |2019-06-27T22:35:02-05:00June 27th, 2019|Categories: Bradley J. Birzer, Cicero, Cicero's Republic Series, Civil Society, Senior Contributors|

In “On Duties,” Cicero throws down the gauntlet, defining one of the most important aspects of Western civilization: There is no greater philosophy than the discovery of what our duties are to one another, to our communities, and to our God. A divorce, the death of a beloved daughter, the absence of his only [...]

The Natural and the Foreign: Republics from Rome to America

By |2019-06-06T10:11:25-05:00May 31st, 2019|Categories: American Republic, Bradley J. Birzer, Cicero, Cicero's Republic Series, Civil Society, Civilization, Senior Contributors|

According to Cicero, the Republic follows the paths of nature and god in all its activities. As such, the true statesman—like the gardener—knows when to plant, when to fertilize, when to water, when to weed, when to prune, and when to harvest. Yet there is still, to be certain, a season for everything. And, [...]

John Randolph of Roanoke & the Formation of a Southern Conservatism

By |2019-05-23T22:19:37-05:00May 23rd, 2019|Categories: American Founding, Civil Society, Conservatism, Economics, History, John Randolph of Roanoke, South|

John Randolph of Roanoke, one of the great exponents of the Southern political tradition, knew that what was proper to any state government was the preservation of the received order. The duty of the citizen of the commonwealth was to resist any legislative or constitutional changes to the received order, and to grant a [...]

Cicero’s Republic: Three in One

By |2019-06-06T10:12:11-05:00May 20th, 2019|Categories: Bradley J. Birzer, Cicero, Cicero's Republic Series, Civil Society, Government, Senior Contributors|

A republic, by its very essence, imitates the highest of creation: man endowed with understanding and free will. Yet, in this greatest of strengths also resides the deepest of weaknesses. When the people enjoy true liberty, they often fail to identify its source, admiring its effects rather than its causes. In particular, they misunderstand [...]

Orestes Brownson’s New England and the Unwritten Constitution

By |2019-05-20T10:01:09-05:00May 19th, 2019|Categories: American Republic, Civil Society, Constitution, Culture, History, Political Philosophy, Politics, Timeless Essays|

Orestes Brownson so esteemed New England people, customs, and institutions that they dominated his writings and fit at the heart of his political ideas. Today’s offering in our Timeless Essay series affords our readers the opportunity to join Michael J. Connolly, as he considers the political thought of Orestes Brownson. —W. Winston Elliott, Publisher [...]

Cicero’s Republic: Implanted in the Nature of Man

By |2019-06-06T10:09:59-05:00May 17th, 2019|Categories: Bradley J. Birzer, Cicero, Cicero's Republic Series, Civil Society, Civilization, Senior Contributors|

The best society, Cicero argues, cultivates us as free individuals for the benefit of the community. Virtue exists in every being, but few realize it or cultivate it. Yet, it is what makes men, men, and allows them to be free. Usually remembered for his political triumphs and defeats as well as for his [...]

Timothy Carney’s “Alienated America” & the Future of the American Dream

By |2019-05-16T13:11:57-05:00May 16th, 2019|Categories: Books, Civil Society, Community, Conservatism, Social Institutions|

Timothy Carney’s book "Alienated America" tackles a crucial question that too few policymakers and news commentators even bother asking anymore: What is at the root of America’s contemporary cultural and social malaise? The short answer, according to Mr. Carney, is the deterioration of civil society. Alienated America: Why Some Places Thrive While Other Places Collapse, [...]

The Honorable Roger Scruton and His Enemies

By |2019-05-15T23:14:50-05:00May 15th, 2019|Categories: Books, Civil Society, Conservatism, Roger Scruton, Western Civilization|

I know of no more comprehensive and reflective summary of conservatism than Sir Roger Scruton's "Conservatism: An Invitation to the Great Tradition." We should not expect conservative establishmentarians on either side of the Atlantic to pay it much heed, though, for the author has now been pushed into the ranks of the untouchables. Conservatism: An [...]

The Limits of Liberty

By |2019-05-12T22:25:09-05:00May 12th, 2019|Categories: Bruce Frohnen, Civil Society, Freedom, Government, Liberty, Rule of Law, Senior Contributors, Social Order|

While the rule of law is an essential public good, the actual number and extent of laws also are important factors in determining whether there will be liberty—and, indeed, the rule of law itself. Moreover, as too much law undermines freedom and its own proper character, it also tears apart the very fabric of [...]

Idle Hands, Women’s Wages, and Unmarried Men

By |2019-09-02T10:23:45-05:00May 9th, 2019|Categories: Civil Society, Labor/Work, Marriage, Modernity, Progressivism, Social Institutions|

Recently, several statistical studies have shown that a decline in marriage rates may be associated with declining male success and male wages, relative to female wages. Do our men need to learn to deal with this, or will this shift in power between the sexes have significant and serious consequences? In January of 2019, [...]