Up from Conservatism

The Future of Liberalism
Alan Wolfe
Alfred A. Knopf, $25.95, 335 pp.

There is a poignant account of the sociologist Richard Sennett, then a radical young academic, upbraiding the great liberal elder statesman, Lionel Trilling. “You have no position,” Sennett complained; “you are always in between.” To which Trilling responded: “Between is the only honest place to be.”

I can imagine Alan Wolfe saying something similar. Wolfe, a political scientist and sociologist who teaches at Boston College, has moved steadily from left to center over the decades....

The remainder of this article is only available to paid subscribers.

Print subscribers to Commonweal are entitled to free access to all premium online content. Click here to purchase a print subscription, or if you’re already a print subscriber, register now for premium access.

Online-only subscriptions provide access to all premium online articles for just $34/year or $2.95/month. Click here to subscribe.

Registered users, please log in below:

Or log in with...

Share

About the Author

Kevin Mattson is the author (most recently) of When America Was Great: The Fighting Faith of Postwar Liberalism (Routledge).