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Table of Contents

PrefaceAcknowledgmentsIntroduction: What is Conservative Social and Political Thought?3Ch. 1Enlightenment Conservatism32"Of Justice," from An Enquiry Concerning the Principles of Morals (1751)"Preface" to A Vindication of Natural Society (Second Edition, 1757)"On the Diminished Disgrace of Whores and Their Children in Our Day" (1772)"No Promotion According to Merit" (c. 1770)Ch. 2The Critique of Revolution78Reflections on the Revolution in France (1790)On Divorce (1801)Essay on the Generative Principle of Political Constitutions and of Other Human Institutions (1814)"Federalist No. 49" (1788)"The Position and Functions of the American Bar, as an Element of Conservatism in the State" (1845)Ch. 3Authority167Culture and Anarchy (1869)Liberty, Equality, Fraternity (1874)Ch. 4Inequality210Aristocracy and Evolution: A Study of the Rights, the Origin, and Social Functions of the Wealthier Classes (1898)"Aptitude and Social Mobility" (1927)Ch. 5The Critique of Good Intentions233"Sociological Fallacies" (1884)"On the Case of a Certain Man Who Is Never Thought Of" (1883)"An Examination of a Noble Sentiment" (c. 1887)Ch. 6War249"Essays on War" (1916)Ch. 7Democracy261"When Parliament Cannot be Sovereign" (1931)"Political Leadership and Democracy" (1942)Ch. 8The Limits of Rationalism285"Speech on Rebuilding the House of Commons" (1943)"Rationalism in Politics" (1947)"The Errors of Constructivism" (1970)The Mirage of Social Justice (1973)The Unheavenly City Revisited (1974)Ch. 9The Critique of Social and Cultural Emancipation358"Pornography, Obscenity, and the Case for Censorship" (1971)To Empower People: The Role of Mediating Structures in Public Policy (1977)"The Social Consequences of Attempts to Create Equality (1984)Ch. 10Between Social Science and Cultural Criticism401"On Culture, Nature, and Naturalness" (1958)"Man and Institutions" (1960)"Toward a Theory of Culture" (1966)Afterword: Recurrent Tensions and Dilemmas of Conservative ThoughtGuide to Further Reading427Index443

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A richly diverse, intelligently designed, and helpfully annotated introduction to the world of conservative theory. No comparable collection that I know of is as broad and unparochial as this one. -- Thomas Pangle, University of Toronto

About the Author

Jerry Z. Muller is Professor of History at the Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C. His previous books, Adam Smith in His Time and Ours: Designing the Decent Society and The Other God That Failed: Hans Freyer and the Deradicalization of German Conservatism are available from Princeton in paperback.


"Muller's book is a bracing commentary on the present-day condition of American conservatism, and a welcome invitation to rethink what conservatives ought to be conserving."--Charles R. Kesler, Wilson Quarterly "A smartly designed anthology. Muller is a capable teacher... He brings a freshness to old standbys like Edmund Burke and James Madison and unearths fascinating conservative passages from Winston Churchill and several lesser lights. The readings may be the meat of the book, but Muller's take on conservatism is its lifeblood. His afterword... is nothing short of brilliant... Muller's exciting anthology effectively shows that conservatism, for all its apparent stodginess, is remarkably alive and organic."--John J. Miller, The Detroit News "Jerry Muller's thoughtful primer on conservative thinkers from David Hume to the present day is timely. If the dispossessed of the right feel the need to go back to basics, they could do worse than start here... This anthology, with Muller's useful introductions to the work of two dozen or so political theorists, reminds us that conservatism has always been the most amorphous of political philosophies."--Philip Stephens, Financial Times "Mr. Miller has covered the bases well, giving a good accounting of the breadth and variety of the subject he anthologizes."--Stephen Goode, Washington Times

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