Observers have long noted the contradictions of conservatism: How do defenders of an organic social order and transcendent truths reconcile their beliefs with the “creative destruction” that capitalists so proudly wreak on the social order? How do those who would limit individuals’ choice in various ways (on abortion, on sexuality, on prayer in school) find themselves linked, at least theoretically, with libertarians? Harp asks more subtle questions: How did religious conservatism shape conservative modes of thought in the centuries predating the contemporary religious right, and, why did apolitical evangelicals make a crucial alliance with the secular conservative movement in the twentieth century, and at what cost for both?
Join a diverse group of historians in discussion! Panelists include Paul Murphy (Grand Valley State University), Elesha Coffman (Baylor University), Michelle Nickerson (Loyola University Chicago), Daniel K. Williams (University of West Georgia), and Gillis Harp (Grove City College).