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Conservatism in America: Making Sense of the American Right

4.13  ·  Rating details ·  31 ratings  ·  5 reviews
This book argues that the American conservative movement, as it now exists, does not have deep roots. It began in the 1950s as the invention of journalists and men of letters reacting to the early Cold War and trying to construct a rallying point for likeminded opponents of international Communism. The resulting movement has exaggerated the permanence of its values; while ...more
Hardcover, 208 pages
Published July 15th 2007 by Palgrave Macmillan
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4.13  · 
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Dietrich
Nov 17, 2016 rated it it was amazing
It is often said that the neoconservatives have derailed a basically healthy conservative movement. As I understand it, that used to be Paul Gottfried’s point of view. In Conservatism In America (2007), however, Gottfried argues that the post WWII conservative movement was intrinsically flawed. Gottfried still prefers the 1950’s style Buckley conservatism to the contemporary neocon version, but he sees similar problems with both, and thinks that the easy neoconservative “takeover” of the conserv ...more
Shyam Sundar Sridhar
Dec 01, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: politics
This book is a critique of the so-called conservative movement which has marched towards the left from the 1950s till today and has captured the Republican Party. The movement speechifies about "conservative values", which are nothing but hollow terms that cover up the movements leftist bias.
Conservatism is something distinct from the Right, according to the author. And the so-called conservatism of today is blocking the rise of a genuine Right in the USA to counter the Establishment Left.
The
...more
Nėra
Feb 20, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This book clarified a lot that confused me about the American political scene, especially regarding the inane conservatives. The author's main points are well documented, often at first hand, which serves to place on in a history of persons and goals. Too often history dissolves into tales of classes, masses and abstract concepts, without reference to the people who embody these world-spirits.

Gottfried's religious views are never expressed in the book, he seems sympathetic to Christianity but wa
...more
Matt Carpenter
Feb 03, 2015 rated it really liked it
This is an informative book that presents an alternative to the FOX News version of conservatism. It compares early, continental European conservatism with the American version that developed throughout our founding period and was detailed by Russell Kirk in his book, The Conservative Mind. Dr. Gottfried is as his best when describing how the conservative movement changed in the 1980's and 1990's from the traditional American conservatism of Kirk into the shallow, Neoconservative version that is ...more
Ashley
Need to glance back through it, but I found his argument more vitriolic than helpful. If I ever am involved in the early stages of a political movement that later rejects me I hope that I can avoid writing a book like this. Ha.
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