A Journal of American Principles & American Practices


The May Resolution and the Declaration of Independence
May 22, 2017 John Schmeeckle

A common starting point for analyzing both the Declaration of Independence and the Virginia Bill of Rights is a neglected earlier document: the Continental Congress’s Resolution of May 10 and 15, 1776.

Thanks, Moms
May 14, 2017 Mary Beth McConahey

Much has changed for American mothers over the past two hundred and forty-one years, but like the mothers who preceded us, we’re raising children. We’re making citizens. We’re perpetuating the project of 1776.

A Nation Without a Soul? A Response to Sarah L. Houser’s “Accountability Nationalism”
May 8, 2017 Aaron Q. Weinstein

Nationalism and religious life are intricately intertwined in the United States. A “civil religion of the Nones,” if it comes into existence, could portend significant changes in American nationalism.

Civic Myth in the Age of Trumpian Reality: Part I
May 1, 2017 Alan Gibson

The sweep of American history yields four distinct narratives of American identity, or civic myths. An ethnically inclusive, multicultural narrative of national identity fused from our most prominent American stories has the best chance of promoting economic prosperity while also projecting a superior normative vision of America to its own citizens and the world.

Civic Myth in the Age of Trumpian Reality: Part II
May 1, 2017 Alan Gibson

Hope for building a shared narrative of national identity lies in the formation of an inclusive civic myth based upon the Gettysburg narrative and the Horatio Alger story.

A Nation with the Soul of a Church: Principles and Practice in American National Identity
April 24, 2017 Sarah L. Houser

It is best to think of having a national identity as sharing a sense of accountability for the actions of one’s country. To identify as an American means to take some sort of ownership in the collective actions of its people, to understand those actions as in some way one’s own.

National Identity and Helping Fellow Americans
April 17, 2017 Elizabeth Theiss-Morse

If the national community needs people to behave selflessly by giving to charities, paying taxes willingly, and supporting government programs to help those less fortunate, then it is those who strongly identify as Americans and who have an inclusive view of who counts as an American who are the main contributors to the nation’s well-being.

The Democratic Lineage of Trump’s Ethnic Nationalism
April 13, 2017 Benjamin E. Park

Donald Trump’s rhetoric and proposed policies are a reminder that America has always had as much ethnic as civic foundations for its nationalist imagination.

American Anthem: The National Anthem and African American Nationhood
April 10, 2017 Stephanie Shonekan

Until the work of racial reconciliation in the U.S. is done, questions will remain and the Star Spangled Banner will fall short of fitting snugly and comfortably on the proud shoulders of those who expect more from their country.

The Mystic Chords Of Memory: Reflections on American Identity II
April 6, 2017 Peter C. Myers

A pervading theme of Madison’s and Lincoln’s reflections on American identity is the moral and psychological realism that informs both men’s reflections. The second installment of a two-part essay.