Contemporary Conservatism

These nonfiction books explore the history of and contemporary issues facing conservatives in American politics.

Related event:
Thomas Frank discusses The Wrecking Crew, Sept. 15, 2009

The Wrecking Crew: How Conservatives Rule
By Thomas Frank
In this book, Frank provides an investigation of the decades of what he considers deliberate – and lucrative – conservative misrule.

From the New Deal to the New Right: Race and the Southern Origins of Modern Conservatism
By Joseph E. Lowndes
The South’s transition from Democratic stronghold to Republican base has frequently been viewed as a recent occurrence, one that largely stems from a 1960s-era backlash against left-leaning social movements. But Lowndes argues this rightward shift was not necessarily a natural response by alienated whites, but rather the result of the long-term development of an alliance between Southern segregationists and Northern conservatives.

White Protestant Nation book jacket

White Protestant Nation: The Rise of the American Conservative Movement
By Allan J. Lichtman
Spanning nearly 100 years of American political history, and abounding with outsized characters – from Lindbergh to Goldwater to Gingrich to Abramoff – this work offers a penetrating look at the origins, evolution, and triumph (at times) of modern conservatism.

Reclaiming Conservatism: How a Great American Political Movement Got Lost--and How It Can Find Its Way Back
By Mickey Edwards
A leading figure in the American conservative movement for more than 40 years, Edwards argues loudly and clearly that conservatives today have abandoned their principles and have become champions of that which they once most feared.

Invasion of the Party-Snatchers: How the Holy-Rollers and Neo-Cons Destroyed the GOP
By Victor Gold
Invasion of the Party Snatchers is a blistering critique not only of the Bush-Cheney administration but also of the Republican Congress. After four decades as a Republican insider, Gold is ready to tell all about the war being waged for the soul of the GOP.

Comeback book jacket

Comeback: Conservatism that Can Win Again
By David Frum
On issues from healthcare to terrorism, the environment to abortion, the challenge of China and the problem of childhood obesity, Frum offers fresh insights to rejuvenate conservative politics.

Do the Right Thing: Inside the Movement that's Bringing Common Sense Back to America
By Mike Huckabee
Part campaign memoir, part manifesto, this work from the former governor of Arkansas and a rising star of the Republican Party lays out his optimistic vision for America's future.

Rebels All!: A Short History of the Conservative Mind in Postwar America
By Kevin Mattson
Kevin Mattson explains the apparent contradictions of the party in this fresh examination of the postwar conservative mind.

Grand New Party: How Republicans Can Win the Working Class and Save the American Dream
By Ross Douthat and Reihan Salam
Blending history, analysis, and fresh, often controversial recommendations, the authors argue that it is time to move beyond the Reagan legacy and the mindset of the current Republican power structure.

Other books by Thomas Frank

What's the Matter With Kansas? book jacket

What's the Matter With Kansas?: How Conservatives Won the Heart of America
By Thomas Frank
Frank cracks the great political mystery of our time: how conservatism, once a marker of class privilege, became the creed of millions of ordinary Americans.

The Conquest of Cool: Business Culture, Counterculture, and the Rise of Hip Consumerism
By Thomas Frank
Most people remember the youth counterculture of the 1960s, but Thomas Frank shows that another revolution shook American business during those boom years. He shows how the youthful revolutionaries were joined--and even anticipated--by such unlikely allies as the advertising industry and the men's clothing business.

One Market Under God: Extreme Capitalism, Market Populism, and the End of Economic Democracy
By Thomas Frank
In this book, social critic Thomas Frank skewers one of the most sacred cows of the go-go '90s: the idea that the new free-market economy is good for everyone.

Book descriptions provided by BookLetters.