A Journal of American Principles & American Practices


The Mystic Chords Of Memory: Reflections on American Identity I
April 5, 2017 Peter C. Myers

Disputes touching the question of national identity have arisen throughout our history. Overarching all such disputes is the fundamental question: What does it mean to be an American? The first installment of a two-part essay.

Let Middlebury be Middlebury. And BYU be BYU.
April 3, 2017 Peter Augustine Lawler

DeVos and Trump trumpet school choice in the spirit of deregulation and in the service of equal citizenship. The same opportunities for a variety of kinds of quality education should be available to everyone—and not just folks in their bubbles. The focus should be on sustaining through deregulation the diversity in our whole system of ...

America First but not America Over Others
March 27, 2017 Juliana Geran Pilon

When Donald Trump states that our nation’s interests come first, he is indeed following in the Founders’ footsteps. Putting American self-interest first does not, though, imply a crassly selfish or imperialistic disregard for the interests and rights of other nations.

Humility, Hubris, and the Next Supreme Court Justice
March 20, 2017 Zachary K. German and Robert J. Burton

The idea of humility as virtue and hubris as vice in the exercise of judicial power has been an enduring theme in American political and legal discourse. It knows no partisan, ideological, or historical boundaries. For that reason, it behooves us to pierce through its rhetorical uses and search for a more theoretical, more principled ...

Edmund Burke’s Alternative: Political Theory and the American Revolution
March 13, 2017 John G. Grove

The ultimate lesson Burke drew from the American crisis was starkly opposed to the one suggested by the Declaration: That equality as a guiding principle actually distorts our perception of political justice by blinding us to meaningful and essential differences within a body politic.

Confronting Globalization: Brexit and the American Revolution
March 9, 2017 Jonathan Chandler

There is a parallel between the American decision to leave the British Empire in 1776 and the British vote to leave the EU in 2016: both movements emphasized their localist credentials through a confrontational narrative that was anti-establishment, anti-corporate and anti-globalist.

Due Process and the Death Penalty
March 6, 2017 Alan Rogers

In the United States Constitution, the Founding Fathers safeguarded the rights of the accused by limiting the power of the state. The Terry Williams case illustrates all too clearly what happens when prosecutors disregard Constitutional rules and principles.

The Dangers of “Aristocracy:” Grund’s Critique of Tocqueville’s Democracy in America
February 27, 2017 Armin Mattes

Bringing Aristocracy in America into dialogue with Tocqueville’s Democracy in America can help historians to better understand the nature of the conflict between “aristocracy” and “democracy”—an issue that may be more relevant even in our own time than many had thought.

Bridling the Unbridled: The American Constitution and The Presidency of Donald Trump
February 20, 2017 Andrew D. Carico

Whatever one may think of President Trump, perhaps the greatest hope for Making America Great Again is not found in a particular president but in the American people’s own charter of government: The Constitution of the United States.

History Without Reading
February 16, 2017 Jim Cullen

Recognizing, and acting, on the reality of student life as it is currently lived means imagining a world without books—broadly construed—as a means toward preventing their disappearance.