I decided to post our regular weekly podcast a couple days ahead of schedule to match up with Dan Mahoney’s compelling essay up today at Real Clear Politics on “What Does Our Nation Mean to Us? Rejecting the Culture of Hate,” because his article meshes perfectly with the conclusion of our wide-ranging conversation about the roots of our present discontents.
With everyone comparing the dismal events of this year with our previous annus horribilis of 1968, I wanted to walk through the other great eruption in May 1968 in France. A lot of Americans don’t know much about that episode, and its powerful and lasting impact on French intellectual and political life. Few Americans know more about French politics and intellectual life than Mahoney, and along the way we survey some leading French thinkers then and now, some well-known like Raymond Aron and Pierre Manent, and some less well known, like Claude Lefort.
But ultimately we conclude with some reflections on the deep crisis of the moment here in America, and with Dan’s rousing charge: “We need a Gaullist moment and we need Churchillian fortitude.” Listen here for more, but also see his article mentioned above.
Daniel Mahoney is the Augustinian Boulanger Chair of political science at Assumption University in Massachusetts, and author of too many fine books to list, though I will recommend as a good short introduction to his thought his book The Conservative Foundations of the Liberal Order.
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