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Progressivism and Liberalism

Progressivism and Liberalism: Progressivism

American Progressivism: A Reader
Ronald Pestritto and William J. Atto (Lexington Books, 2008)
A good collection that runs the gamut of progressive thought, from political principles, to Social Gospel writings, to foreign policy speeches and documents. It also includes a fine introductory essay explaining the basic views of the progressives.

Rendezvous with Destiny: A History of Modern American Reform
Eric Goldman (Alfred Knopf, 1952)
An honest and comprehensive overview written in narrative form by a historian sympathetic to the reform efforts of the period.

The Progressive Revolution in Politics and Political Science: Transforming the American Regime
Edited by John Marini and Ken Masugi (Rowman & Littlefield, 2005)
Several recent works have delved more deeply in to the progressive rejection of the American Founding. A good introduction to this scholarship with essays on the progressive critique of American constitutionalism, as well as on progressive ideas in theory and practice.

Woodrow Wilson and the Roots of Modern Liberalism
Ronald Pestritto (Rowman & Littlefield, 2005)
An important volume that treats Woodrow Wilson as a political thinker as well as a politician, Pestritto's work reveals Wilson’s progressive philosophy, derived from nineteenth-century German thought, and its profound and continuing influence on progressive-liberalism in America.

Living Constitution, Dying Faith: Progressivism and the New Science of Jurisprudence
Bradley C.S. Watson (ISI Books, 2009)
Bradley C.S. Watson's work explains how modern legal thinking began with the progressive rejection of America's principles and its creation of a new theory of the “living Constitution.” 

Liberal Fascism: The Secret History of the American Left, from Mussolini to the Politics of Change
Jonah Goldberg (Doubleday, 2008)
A heavily-researched and deliberately provocative book, this recent work chronicles many of the excesses of the progressive movement and explains how those excesses were connected to some of the basic principles implicit in progressive philosophy.

Reprints of Progressive classics by Transaction Publishers
Transaction has republished important Progressive books that have long been out of print, including titles by Woodrow Wilson and Herbert Croly. Each book has an introduction by Sidney A. Pearson, Jr. in which he contrasts the Progressive arguments with the principles of the Founding.

Progressivism and Liberalism: Modern Liberalism

The Dream and the Nightmare: The Sixties’ Legacy to the Underclass
Myron Magnet (William Morrow & Co., 1993)
Magnet declares that it was the 1960s counterculture that divided the nation into haves and have-nots and created today’s underclass. The sexual revolution, he argues, transformed American values and behavior, In effect the new culture held the poor back from advancement “by robbing them of responsibility” and “squelching their initiative and energy.” 

The Closing of the American Mind
Allan Bloom (Simon & Schuster, 1987)
In 1987, Allan Bloom published his withering criticism of relativism and multiculturalism on the American campus along with a stout defense of the great books and thinkers of Western Civi­lization. The Closing of the American Mind became one of the most talked-about books of the decade and a best-seller with a million copies in circulation.

Liberal Parents, Radical Children
Midge Decter (Coward, McCann & Geoghegan, 1975)
In Liberal Parents, Radical Children, Decter argues that the parents of her genera­tion failed to discharge their fundamental responsibility of passing on to their children the importance of character, standards, and the notion of right and wrong. As a result, their wayward children eagerly embraced the counterculture with its contempt for authority, taste for drugs, and sense of entitlement.

Who Stole Feminism? How Women Have Betrayed Women
Christina Hoff Sommers (Simon & Schuster, 1994)
Who Stole Feminism? is a convincing indictment of the ideo­logues who hijacked the feminist movement, deliberately dis­torting the data and manipulating politicians along the way. Sommers argues that the gender feminists have done far more damage than good for women because they constantly encourage conflict between the sexes and a victim mentality among women.

The Clash of Orthodoxies: Law, Religion, and Morality in Crisis
Robert P. George (ISI Books, 2001)
Public philosopher Robert George effectively disproves the liberal argument of the 2000s that the conservative position on social issues such as abortion and same-sex marriage is “mere religion,” bereft of rationality. Using natural law philosophy, he calls for a return to limited government, the rule of law, and private property as well as social justice and the common good.

Suicide of the West: An Essay on the Meaning and Destiny of Liberalism
James Burnham (John Day Co., 1964)
Burnham argues that the West has been in territorial retreat and civilizational decline since World War I, having apparently lost its will to survive. The reasons he gives, including “the decay of religion,” “an excess of material luxury,” and the pernicious influence of modern liberalism, remain as valid as they were in 1964.

Making It
Norman Podhoretz (Random House, 1967)
The arresting memoir of the son of immigrant Jews who rejected liberalism in favor of neoconservatism and became one of the most influential intellectuals in America.

Radical Son: A Generational Odyssey
David Horowitz (Touchstone, 1997)
Horowitz’s story of his remarkable ideological metamorphosis from being a leader of the radical Left during the 1960’s into being one of the most quoted conservatives of America today. In Horowitz’s own words, “It was what I thought was the humanity of the Marxist idea that made me what I was then; it is the inhumanity of what I have seen to be the Marxist reality that has made me what I am now.” 

Illiberal Education: The Politics of Race and Sex on Campus
Dinesh D’Souza (The Free Press, 1991)
D’Souza exposes the alarming transformation of American higher education for the worse in the name of political correctness. He concludes that affirmative action has only increased tensions between the races and the genders.

New Deal or Raw Deal? How FDR’s Economic Legacy Has Damaged America
Burton Folsom, Jr. (Threshold, 2008)
Folsom argues that New Deal government intervention did not end the Great Depression and continues to cause problems for America to this day. An accessible revisionist assessment of the New Deal and the “Roosevelt legend.” 

The Long March: How the Cultural Revolution of the 1960s Changed America
Roger Kimball (Encounter, 2000)
Kimball examines a series of Sixties figures to determine how they succeeded in effecting a revolution in American morality and mores. A polemical critique of the Sixties and the negative consequences of its ideas.