Owen Barfield’s Commonwealth of the Spirit

By |2021-03-30T15:27:10-05:00March 31st, 2021|Categories: Bradley J. Birzer, Community, Inklings, Senior Contributors|

Owen Barfield called upon the men of the Western world to form themselves into a “commonwealth of the spirit” in which there is no copyright. To create a commonwealth of the soul, we need to know the limits and range of individualism as well as the limits and range of national character. Shortly after Great [...]

John Winthrop as Imaginative Conservative

By |2021-03-15T12:41:35-05:00March 14th, 2021|Categories: Bradley J. Birzer, Community, History, Senior Contributors, The Imaginative Conservative|

Though rooted in a certain time and a certain place, elements of John Winthrop’s teachings are timeless, and, whether we agree with him completely or not, we should recognize him as an important and imaginative conservative of yesteryear. Between 1629 and 1640, roughly 21,000 Puritans (and servants) immigrated from England (especially East Anglia) to New [...]

Tocqueville and Totalitarian Democracy in America

By |2021-02-24T16:39:22-06:00February 24th, 2021|Categories: Alexis de Tocqueville, American Republic, Civilization, Community, Equality, Freedom|

American democracy has proven to be a success in its representation of interests but a failure in cultivating citizenship; it has protected some civil liberties while allowing others to erode away. One lesson we can draw from its history of successes and failures is this: For a republic to succeed, institutions are not enough; civic [...]

Keeping the Holiday Spirit Alive Is Up to Us

By |2020-12-03T12:57:55-06:00December 3rd, 2020|Categories: Christmas, Community, Coronavirus|

Most of us know family members or friends who are depressed or saddened by this pandemic. Add to this scenario the usual holiday blues, and we have a mental health disaster in the making. We can help fight against it by spreading goodwill in whatever way we can. Not everyone has a Hallmark Christmas. WebMD’s [...]

Neighborhoods: A Forgotten School of Family & Social Flourishing

By |2020-12-02T15:48:40-06:00December 2nd, 2020|Categories: Civil Society, Civilization, Community, Family|

The neighbourhood can give one a greater sense of a geographic and social whole. It can serve as a bridge between the home and the larger society. The limited control we have over who our neighbours are reflects the normal conditions of a large society. How well do you know your neighbours? How much does [...]

Civil Disobedience, Homestyle

By |2021-03-02T16:58:21-06:00November 16th, 2020|Categories: Civil Society, Community, Patriotism|

The ideals upon which America was founded are now forgotten by many. Yet these same ideals are buried in these songs of patriotism and faith. By singing these songs, we instill the truths contained in their words in our hearts. We learn once again to have faith in God, to gather and build community within [...]

“Mr. Smith Goes to Washington”: Rebuilding Moral Community

By |2020-10-22T11:13:54-05:00October 21st, 2020|Categories: Civil Society, Community, Film|

The struggle between good and evil that Frank Capra depicts in "Mr. Smith" is clearly understood by viewers as reflecting timeless truths about citizenship and living together in a free society. Even in the fractured public square we inhabit today, members of opposing political tribes can recognize our common humanity in the heroic and humble [...]

Revisiting Robert Nisbet’s Conservative Classic

By |2020-10-09T15:40:05-05:00October 9th, 2020|Categories: Community, Conservatism, Freedom, Modernity, Robert Nisbet|

In his analysis of alienation in the modern world, Robert Nisbet recognized an important truth about the human person, which makes “The Quest for Community” timely even today: The individual cannot be understood except in relationship to other individuals in time and space. The abstract, autonomous individual does not exist nor can he ever exist. [...]

Manzoni’s Political Economy

By |2020-10-06T11:19:30-05:00October 5th, 2020|Categories: Christianity, Community, David Deavel, Economics, Europe, Literature, Political Economy, Senior Contributors|

Alessandro Manzoni’s gift for seeing the humorous, pathetic, and anger-making aspects of a world in which justice is difficult to find ought to be more recognized. But it is no wonder that what attracts people are the faith, hope, and love that are both the hidden foundation and crown of political and economic life. Alessandro [...]

Is Critical Race Theory Racist?

By |2020-09-30T15:38:27-05:00September 30th, 2020|Categories: Community, Education, Equality, Ethnicity|

Critical theory bulldozes all the complexities of history, education, and communities into a world of good guys and bad guys, oppressors and oppressed. And in doing so, it makes it nearly impossible to deal with the actual issues of denied opportunities, prejudiced expectations, and instances of real racism that need to be addressed. Most Americans [...]

Fusionism Is Dead, Long Live Conservatism!

By |2020-09-09T16:10:56-05:00September 9th, 2020|Categories: American Republic, Community, Conservatism, Economics, Free Markets, Libertarians, Politics|

The fusionism of the past has been outmoded not due to some notion of progressive change but because the libertarian perspective it promotes is fundamentally flawed. Acknowledging the failure of fusionism is the first step to ensuring that conservatism may long endure. I recently had a rather extended debate with a libertarian-minded friend who expressed [...]

Nock and Nisbet on Society and State

By |2020-09-04T15:20:28-05:00September 4th, 2020|Categories: Bradley J. Birzer, Civilization, Community, Culture, Robert Nisbet, Senior Contributors, Social Institutions|

As Albert Jay Nock argued in the 1930s, and Robert Nisbet in the 1960s, the state plays a zero-sum game: It desires to assume all power over society, even to the point of taking the place of the Church as the glue that holds all together, and thus it renders society obsolete in the long [...]

Remembering the Normal

By |2020-08-31T15:05:43-05:00August 31st, 2020|Categories: Christianity, Community, Glenn Arbery, Happiness, Nature, Senior Contributors, Wyoming Catholic College|

As this strange summer of a strange year comes to an end, I am reminded of ordinary realities and experiences that now appear in a new light. At our college, classes started back up, and I cannot recall a happier sense of new beginning, partly because this, too, has been defamiliarized. On Sunday of this [...]

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