- Paperback: 226 pages
- Publisher: Bloomsbury 3PL; New Ed edition (3 Oct. 2007)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0826496156
- ISBN-13: 978-0826496157
- Product Dimensions: 14 x 1.2 x 21.6 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 63,479 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- See Complete Table of Contents
A Political Philosophy: Arguments for Conservatism Paperback – 3 Oct 2007
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'What may be found here is a collection of acute observations about modern attitudes, arguments underming their essential assumptions, and references to the past which enable the reader to set moral and intellectual enquiry into a wide frame of reference. The essays are certainly polemical, and are clearly intended to be; they are, however, elevated above the trivial rhetoric of modern politics, and achieve a distinction that is at once apparent and readily accessible. His essays are prophetic assaults upon the superficial and false understandings inherent in the substitute morality now mandatory in modern materialist thought...there remains intellectual engagement of a high order.' --Church Times
About the Author
Roger Scruton is a philosopher and writer. Formerly Professor of Aesthetics at Birkbeck College, London and Visiting Professor at Boston College, USA. He now lives as a freelance writer in Wiltshire. He has published The West and the Rest and News from Somewhere with Continuum.
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Top Customer Reviews
The country has been moronized and degraded in virtually every sense since 1945.
Very tight controls over the content of what can be said has gone fist-in-glove with an obsession with everything global and international as a panacea. The rise of television is emblematic. The pain people feel with their lives and the world is soothed by TV as by some opiate. No government can now do without TV as a means of propaganda, social control and uniformity. People are in key senses now servile - servile to (Left) opinion, tastes, outlook, prejudices, ideology, vacuity. Never have people been so effectively disenfranchised. Never have people begged more to be enslaved - even Rome's enemies expressed a desire for freedom.
Scruton is really the first important Right intellectual figure in Britain, in recent years, to gain traction and a following by engaging with these issues.
The project might be called the counter-revolution to re-establish our borders, language and culture.
Scruton makes a fascinating reference to the Ummah and ijima of the Muslims (the search for unity and consensus) which I think explains much of the elites bahaviour in recent years. The Left has become obsessed with the violence, fanaticism and ideology of radical Islam which they see as a useful tool to hammer what remains of the Christianity and independence they hate so much. They stress that 'we all agree' as the modus operandi which reflects the Muslim view that we are all part of the one society of believers. Let's all hold hands and sing 'we are the world.'
Make no mistake - those at the top are radicals in every respect, for others that is, not themselves.
An outstanding collection of essays.
There are elements within this book which both appeal and question the right and left of British politics. Scruton's conservative philosophy would question the faith many conservatives now have in globalisation and in the unfettered operation of the free market, reminding them of the loss of sovereignty and socio-cultural cohesion that this would inevitably entail. Scruton also covers the issue of animal rights, marriage, abortion and euthanasia and postmodernism his comments in these areas raise important questions as to the future of politics in this country.
The most important feature of this book is to redefine the important difference between Burkean conservatism and free-market "conservatism" which is proprerly termed liberalism. (This is not to be confused with the American usage of the term where liberal means left-of-centre.)
This important difference is worth bearing in mind because the free-market liberalism of low-taxation, the minimal state and business-friendliness is at odds with Burkean notion of the contract between generations dead, living and unborn. This is a touchstone to which Scruton comes back time and again throughout the book. Specifically, big business is unable to cope with issues of animal welfare and moral limits to consumerism. There is no market-conservative argument against pornography while Tory conservatives are so equipped to provide a critique.
My only specific criticisms of the book are twofold: one is that while Roger Scruton is entitled to his views on same-sex marriage, he really ought to lay out a much better case against than he does. If there is a conservative objection to same sex marriage his one-and-a-half page throwawy aside is not it. If social stability is a worthwhile public good, then extending this structure beyond the standard heterosexual couple would seem to be a legitimate aim. If it is not, Scruton has not fully explained why.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
An excellent analysis of the Conservative position from a philosopher who really understands his subject and can present it in a way which is both easy to follow and profound at... Read morePublished 7 months ago by Barbara
I have never understood Scruton's claim to be Conservative. He is too abstract for a Conservative and has spent years trying to turn Conservatism onto another ideology when it... Read morePublished on 6 April 2012 by David Howells
This is an important resource, as it lays out a eleven essays on the basis for conservative thinking. Read morePublished on 14 Dec. 2011 by Patrick Mullane
I got this book as a parting gift from my Philosophy lecturer at college. As a keen Tory I was very interested in reading it. Read morePublished on 3 Sept. 2009 by Hugh Evans
Scruton calmly asserts that T.S. Eliot was "indisputably the greatest poet writing in English in the twentieth century. Read morePublished on 13 Sept. 2007 by Alexander J. Malt
Roger Scruton articulates a compassionate and tolerant world view rooted in an understanding of tradition and enlightenment. Read morePublished on 30 Aug. 2007 by Felix the cat
This book is essential reading for those who take the content and the expression of conservative thought seriously. It adds to and reinforces earlier writings on a similar theme. Read morePublished on 8 April 2007 by Stuart E. Hopkins
As I write this review, the 2006 Conservative Party conference is drawing to a close. Some of our political pundits (in The Daily Telegraph and The Daily Mail) are bewailing the... Read morePublished on 4 Oct. 2006 by Mr. David Moss