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The Conservative Sensibility

The Conservative Sensibility

From the Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist, an “astonishing” and “enthralling” (Booklist) new reflection on American conservatism, examining how the Founders’ belief in natural rights created a great American political tradition–one that now finds itself under threat.

For more than four decades, George F. Will has attempted to discern the principles of the Western political tradition and apply them to America’s civic life. Today, the stakes could hardly be higher. Vital questions about the nature of man, of rights, of equality, of majority rule are bubbling just beneath the surface of daily events in America.

The Founders’ vision, articulated first in the Declaration of Independence and carried out in the Constitution, gave the new republic a framework for government unique in world history. Their beliefs in natural rights, limited government, religious freedom, and in human virtue and dignity ushered in two centuries of American prosperity. Now, as Will shows, conservatism is under threat–both from progressives and elements inside the Republican Party. America has become an administrative state, while destructive trends have overtaken family life and higher education. Semi-autonomous executive agencies wield essentially unaccountable power. Congress has failed in its duty to exercise its legislative powers. And the executive branch has slipped the Constitution’s leash.

In the intellectual battle between the vision of Founding Fathers like James Madison, who advanced the notion of natural rights that pre-exist government, and the progressivism advanced by Woodrow Wilson, the Founders have been losing. It’s time to reverse America’s political fortunes.

Expansive, intellectually thrilling, and written with the erudite wit that has made Will beloved by millions of readers, The Conservative Sensibility is an extraordinary new book from one of America’s most celebrated political writers.
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Genre: Nonfiction / Political Science / Commentary & Opinion

On Sale: June 4th 2019

Price: $25.98 / $33.98 (CAD)

ISBN-13: 9781549195235

What's Inside

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Reader Reviews


"A monumental achievement. The Conservative Sensibility is not a 'Washington book' about partisan politics--it's much bigger than that. It's a career capstone that will stir your soul with its passionate reminder of what conservatism really means. Buy it, read it, share it."
Senator Ben Sasse, New York Times-bestselling author of Them and The Vanishing American Adult
"A richly documented history of and argument for a wider embrace of conservative political values."—Kirkus Reviews
"The most considerable conservative book since Kirk's [The Conservative Mind].... The richness and depth of Will's study is astonishing.... Everyone interested in American politics and liberal democracy will find it enthralling."—Booklist (starred review)
"It's time to return to the wisdom of the founding fathers, argues this sweeping political manifesto.... Will centers the book on a rich, wide-ranging discussion of political philosophy written in graceful, aphoristic prose... Will offers a formidable, thought-provoking riposte to conventional dogmas."—Publishers Weekly
"Most Americans would agree, I think, that America is exceptional, but nailing down exactly why can be a matter of contention. With his typical pellucid prose, George Will provides an exceptionally elegant explanation in ... The Conservative Sensibility."—Kyle Smith, National Review
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