Redeeming America’s Political Culture
Cover of issue 35

How to Cite

Redeeming America’s Political Culture: The Kirkean Tradition in the Study of American Public Life. (2006). The Political Science Reviewer, 35, 230-263.


Is the United States a revolutionary nation? Was it founded in1776 out of whole cloth by men determined to construct agovernment and a people committed to radically new ideas ofpolitical equality and individual liberty? Or is American public lifebest understood as the outgrowth of a political culture—governmentalstructures and an unwritten constitution consisting ofpeople's habits, attitudes toward government and general ways oflife—rooted in British and earlier traditions in the west? Were thefounders politically innovating liberals or culturally and historicallygrounded conservatives?