Ryan T. Anderson researches and writes about marriage and religious liberty as the William E. Simon senior research fellow in American principles and public policy at The Heritage Foundation.
He also is the founder and editor of Public Discourse, the online journal of the Witherspoon Institute of Princeton, N.J.
Anderson is the author of the “Truth Overruled: The Future of Marriage and Religious Freedom.” He is the co-author with Princeton’s Robert P. George and Sherif Girgis of the book “What Is Marriage? Man and Woman: A Defense.”
Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito cited “What Is Marriage?” twice in his dissenting opinion on the federal Defense of Marriage Act case in 2013. Justice Clarence Thomas cited Anderson’s research in a dissenting opinion in the 2015 Supreme Court marriage case.
Anderson received his bachelor’s degree from Princeton University, graduating Phi Beta Kappa and magna cum laude. He holds a doctoral degree in political philosophy from the University of Notre Dame. His dissertation was titled: “Neither Liberal nor Libertarian: A Natural Law Approach to Social Justice and Economic Rights.” He also holds a master’s degree from Notre Dame.
His work has appeared in major newspapers and online venues such as the New York Times, Washington Post Wall Street Journal, Weekly Standard and National Review, as well as scholarly publications such as Harvard Journal of Law and Public Policy, Harvard Health Policy Review, First Things the and Claremont Review of Books. He is a frequent contributor to The Daily Signal, Heritage’s multimedia news organization.
Anderson is under contract with Oxford University Press to write a book on religious liberty with John Corvino and Sherif Girgis.
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Anderson’s recent work at The Heritage Foundation focuses on the constitutional questions surrounding same-sex marriage. He also studies justice and moral principles in economic thought, health care and education, and has expertise in bioethics and natural law theory.
Anderson’s “Truth Overruled” (Regnery, July 2015) was the first book-length response to the Supreme Court’s 2015 ruling on marriage. It arrived little more than two years after “What Is Marriage?” (Encounter Books, December 2012), the acclaimed book he wrote with Princeton’s George and Girgis.
In addition to his memorable 2013 debate about marriage on “Live With Piers Morgan,” Anderson’s news interviews include CNN’s “New Day With Chris Cuomo,” Fox’s “Hannity” and MSNBC’s “The Ed Show With Ed Schultz.”
In April 2015, The Washington Post ran a front-page profile of Anderson. In addition to the publications mentioned earlier, his work has been featured in or published by USA Today, the Washington Examiner, Christianity Today, the New Atlantis, Touchstone, Books and Culture, The City and Human Life Review.
Anderson previously was assistant editor of First Things and a Robert Novak journalism fellow. He also was executive director of the Witherspoon Institute, where he was research assistant to Robert P. George and Jean Bethke Elshtain.
Anderson describes his research as spanning the natural law tradition in conversation with classical and contemporary liberalism. In October 2014, he defended his Notre Dame doctoral dissertation, “Neither Liberal nor Libertarian: A Natural Law Approach to Social Justice and Economic Rights.”
Born in Baltimore, Md., Anderson currently resides in Washington, D.C.
Follow him on Twitter: @RyanTAnd
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