Category: Political Theory

Natural Law in Early Protestantism

The role of natural law in Reformed Protestantism has been a topic of considerable debate since the twentieth century. As early as the debate between Karl Barth and Emil Brunner in 1934, two competing views on natural law emerged: the...

/ November 3, 2020

J. Cole’s “For Your Eyez Only” Gives Hope for Change Beyond Elections

In my lessons on Christianity and social justice, I always feature clips from J. Cole’s 2017 HBO documentary For Your Eyez Only. The film, directed by Cole and Scott Lazer, features interviews with residents of small black cities throughout the...

/ October 21, 2020

Is the Queen Post-Liberal?

As any number of the modern political “pathologies” that so mystify our ruling classes, from Brexit to Trump and the EU’s slow-burn implosion, testify, liberalism is out of puff. Everywhere, the political, economic, and cultural establishments that have determined our...

/ July 2, 2020

The Populists and the Pandemic

Recently the world commemorated VE day, celebrating the vast global effort to defeat fascism, an inhuman ideology which sacrificed life on the altar of materialism. The Queen gave a speech to her quarantined subjects: declaring that ‘our streets are not...

/ May 20, 2020

Our Lives or Our Freedoms: The Fear of Tyranny in a Time of Pandemic

There’s a famous scene in the movie, Braveheart, a 1995 film that became something of a classic among embattled Christian conservatives who liked to see our own battle with “Big Government” in the romanticized terms of a Scottish epic. Riding...

/ April 8, 2020

Waiting for Conservative Renewal

Estragon: We always find something, eh Didi, to give us the impression we exist? Vladimir: Yes, yes, we’re magicians. In Beckett’s Waiting for Godot, there is a much promised advent that dominates the lives of the hapless Vladimir and Estragon....

/ April 3, 2020

Common Good Constitutionalism Considered

Right. I read it. And by “It” I mean, of course, Adrian Vermeule’s Atlantic piece. Here’s the thing: Vermeule’s “Common good constitutionalism” is not actually that different from, for example, Hadley Arkes’ natural law constitutionalism. That tradition of Finnis-inspired Lincoln-loving...

/ April 1, 2020

Nations and Nation-States: A Question for National Conservatives

Early in his book The Fate of Africa Martin Meredith describes the… we’ll call it “unconventional” method by which sub-Saharan Africa was divided in the late 19th century at the Conference of Berlin. Nigeria, for example, contained as many as 250...

/ March 5, 2020

On Chosen Family in East Village Vaguely Soviet Speakeasies

Last night, we launched Issue 23 of Plough Quarterly, at the Red Room at KGB Bar on East 4th Street. I went there first when I was probably sixteen or so, for a book launch of my father’s, and I’ve...

/ January 30, 2020

Leviathan, Zarathustra, and the End(s) of Liberalism

Enter scene left: House Majority Leader Nancy Pelosi harangues the House while pointing to a giant styrofoam board with the pledge of allegiance emblazoned across it. Meanwhile, Rep. Adam Schiff walks the articles of impeachment from the House to the...

/ January 23, 2020