The Making of American Conservatism Since 1932, from Herbert Hoover to Donald Trump

  • Faculty: Gerald Early
  • Schedule: Mondays/Wednesdays, 8:30 a.m. - 10:00 a.m.
  • Course Number: L57 RelPol 3504

This course covers the major conservative thinkers from the rise of FDR to today, including Hoover, Robert Taft, William F. Buckley, Frank Meyer, Pat Buchanan, Phyllis Schafly, Jerry Falwell, Ronald Reagan, the neocons, and ending with some of the younger conservative pundits of today like Rich Lowery, Mark Steyn, Ann Coulter, Michelle Malkin, and Dinesh D’Souza. We will also look at the career of Sarah Palin and the rise of the Tea Party. Several classes are devoted to black conservatives including Thomas Sowell, Shelby Steele, and Clarence Thomas. We will conclude the course with a consideration of the impact of Donald Trump on the Republican Party and conservatism generally. We try to answer the questions: What is conservatism and who are its adherents? Can we speak of conservatism in the singular or are there several types of conservatism? Are the various forms of conservatism politically and intellectually compatible? How has conservatism changed since Reagan and the 1980s? What inroads has conservatism made in the cultural and political life of the United States? Is the United States essentially a conservative nation? Attendance mandatory.